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New paper corrects two widely held perceptions in regulatory community

AMERICA'S POWER PLAN: This paper corrects two widely held notions in the regulatory community: that the utility’s rate of return is the sole value driver for utility shareholders and that rates of return are set at the cost of equity. Neither of these perceptions is correct. Instead, the financial “value engine”—the difference between a utility’s return on investment and its cost of capital—drives shareholder returns. The authors argue that regulators should use this value engine to align utilities’ financial motivations with delivering value to customers and society. They can offer utilities opportunities to earn increased revenues when they provide value-based products and services. June 2015

Additional comments on the Clean Power Plan

Brian Parsons from Western Grid Group, along with Sue Tierney and Eric Svenson, sent additional comments on the Clean Power Plan to FERC, EPA and DOE. The letter, initial comments and the full report are available here. Submitted April 20, 2015

Comments submitted to the FERC Regional Technical Conferences

Western Grid Group along with 10 other groups submitted comments to FERC at the Denver Regional Technical Conference on Environmental Regulations and Electric Reliability, Wholesale Electricity Markets, and Energy Infrastructure held on February 25, 2015. Download or view comments here.

WGG’s Synapse EIM Report

WGG commissioned a report by Synapse Energy Economic, Inc. to estimate the benefits of the newly formed regional Energy Imbalance Market. The report was commissioned to illuminate all benefits - financial savings as well as reliability improvements - resulting from utilities participating in this market platform. The report will be used to encourage utilities and regulators to join the EIM as soon as possible to capture customers savings, reduce the cost of renewable energy integration and improve reliability.

WCEA encourages Colorado Governor Hickenlooper to sign S252

WGG joins advocate organizations from throughout the west urging Governor Hickenlooper to sign Senate Bill 252 which increases renewable energy requirements on co-ops in Colorado.

IEEE publishes Collaborative Transmission Planning: California’s RETI paper by David Olsen

RETI (Renewable Energy Transmission Initiative) identified and ranked Renewable Energy Zones in California and neighboring regions, using both economic and environmental criteria, determined the transmission needed, based on least-regrets transmission planning principles, to access and deliver target renewable energy, and prepared a statewide conceptual transmission plan. RETI has been effective in identifying development priorities and in building stakeholder support for generation-transmission development for renewable energy. Its approach is applicable to other jurisdictions considering large-scale wind power-transmission construction.