FERC proposal expands State utility commission involvement in regional transmission planning

Under a new Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) proposal, State utility regulators would have a major role in regional transmission planning and determining how to share the costs of new transmission facilities.

The proposal requires a regional planning and cost allocation process but doesn’t dictate specific outcomes.

The proposal, approved on a 4-1 vote, aims to encourage long-range transmission planning, which can boost grid reliability while saving consumers money.

It requires regional transmission planners to identify transmission needs using long-term scenarios that include the effects of extreme weather.

State utility commissions would have to approve any cost allocation methods that are used to determine who pays for regional transmission projects.

In addition, the proposal would bar developers of regional transmission projects from getting “construction work in progress.”

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