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FERC seeks input about improvements in transmission incentives policy

Power in California. Author: Jeff Turner. License: Creative Commons, Attribution 2.0 Generic.

March 22 (Renewables Now) - The US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) is looking to gather comments on possible improvements to its current electric transmission incentives policy.

The commission has opened a Notice of Inquiry (NOI) which examines whether incentives should still be granted based on the risks and challenges faced by projects or depend on the benefits brought by a project. The goal of the NOI is to make sure that the electric transmission incentives policy appropriately encourages the development of the required infrastructure for ensuring grid reliability and reducing congestion.

The NOI also addresses: the consideration of incentives based upon measurable criteria for economic efficiency and reliability benefits; the provision of incentives for improvements to existing transmission facilities; the consideration of project costs and benefits in awarding incentives; and whether to review incentive applications on a case-specific or standardised basis. Also, the NOI seeks input about various return on equity (ROE) incentives and the possible metrics for evaluating the effectiveness of incentives.

FERC is considering these changes almost 13 years after the issuance of an order that established a number of incentive rate treatments.

FERC will be accepting comments for a period of 90 days after publication in the federal register, while reply comments are due 30 days after that.

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