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Energy Policy Pulse: March/April 2024

Illuminating the latest in energy policy news.

Energy Policy Pulse: March/April 2024

Illuminating the latest in energy policy news.

Published 06-14-24

Submitted by NRG Energy

Two men in suits standing in front of a government building.

Originally published on NRG Energy Insights

By NRG Editorial Voices

What is happening in energy policy? From the ongoing nuclear reactor discussion in Texas to Massachusetts’ latest price report, this edition highlights the latest energy policy news and major headlines across several markets for March and April.

How is FERC impacting the energy markets?

Court scraps last-minute FERC rule change in largest power market

A federal appeals court ruled against the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's (FERC) approval of grid operator PJM's rerun of a capacity auction. The court found that FERC exceeded its authority by allowing PJM to retroactively change auction rules, citing violations of the filed rate doctrine and prompting uncertainty about implementation and market impact.

NRG VP of Regulatory Affairs, Travis Kavulla, called the 3rd Circuit’s decision “a vindication for certainty in how these electricity markets are conducted.”

FERC sets date for landmark transmission rule

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission held a special meeting to consider a proposed rule that could significantly alter how power grid expansions are planned and funded. The rule, aimed at improving grid reliability and integrating renewable energy, faces challenges related to cost allocation among states and coordination between federal and state regulators.

How is the East looking to improve infrastructure?

New England states apply for US government transmission and energy storage funding

New England states are seeking federal funding through the U.S. Department of Energy's Grid Innovation Program for electricity transmission and storage projects. They aim to enhance grid reliability and resilience, with two proposed projects focusing on grid interconnection upgrades and increased electricity transfer capacity.

How is retail competition affecting Massachusetts’ energy prices?

Report Says Massachusetts Customers Could Have Saved $1.7 Billion Over Past 2 Years by Shopping for Retail Supplier

A report revealed potential savings for Massachusetts customers enrolled in competitive electric supplier. The analysis suggests that if all customers had chosen the lowest-cost competitive supplier, they could have saved approximately $1.7 billion over two years - emphasizing the benefits of retail electric choice for consumers.

Will there be more generation in Georgia?

Georgia Power Makes Deal for More Electrical Generation, Pledging Downward Rate Pressure

Georgia Power Co. has struck a deal with regulatory staff to accelerate building and acquiring more electrical generation, promising reduced rates for existing customers. The deal, subject to approval by the Georgia Public Service Commission, involves credits toward future rate calculations and commitments to solar generation with battery storage.

Are changes coming to the Texas grid?

Texas Republicans take a stand against bill to connect ERCOT to national grid

Texas congressmen, including Randy Weber, Troy Nehls, Pat Fallon, and John Carter, are introducing a resolution opposing the "Connect the Grid Act," which aims to integrate Texas' electric grid with the national grid. The resolution asserts Texas' autonomy in managing its grid and rejecting federal oversight. Proponents of the bill argue that integration would enhance resilience, lower costs, and aid climate goals without altering the grid's operation under ERCOT.

Small nuclear reactors may be coming to Texas, boosted by interest from Gov. Abbott

In hopes of addressing issues highlighted by the state's electric grid vulnerabilities, Governor Greg Abbott is exploring the possibility of smaller nuclear reactors to meet Texas' growing energy needs. Proponents see small reactors as a solution and continue discussions around the future of nuclear power in Texas and beyond.

Are energy rates lowering in Alberta?

Province unveils plan to stabilize electricity rates in Alberta

Premier Danielle Smith announced legislation to stabilize default electricity rates in Alberta. Set every two years, new rates are expected to take effect January 1, 2025, saving Albertans up to $800 annually. The policy aims to rename the default rate to "Rate of Last Resort," provide clarity to consumers, and encourage them to explore competitive rate options. 

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