PJM Price Increase Sets Dangerous Precedent
February 12, 2014
Washington, D.C. – Yesterday, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) set a dangerous precedent by approving PJM’s waiver request to allow electricity providers to offer power prices that exceed the market cap of $1,000 per megawatt-hour.
“This year’s historically cold winter has served as a crystal ball into our future, revealing the energy cost and electric reliability threats posed by the Obama Administration’s overreliance on a more narrow fuel source portfolio that excludes the use of coal,” said Laura Sheehan, senior vice president of communications for the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity (ACCCE). “Rather than setting a dangerous precedent that will place the burden of increased electricity costs on ratepayers, we must instead undertake a critical examination of energy and environmental policies coming from the White House. PJM’s customers deserve answers from President Obama and EPA Administrator McCarthy about why they are pursuing a politically motivated agenda that undermines Americans’ access to affordable, reliable energy at the expense of family budgets and businesses’ bottom lines.”
Yesterday, as reported by Greenwire, Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) discussed the waiver request approval at the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners’ (NARUC) winter meeting.
“I was told by one of the utility companies that … [PJM was] within 700 megawatts of the system basically not being able to charge the grid. I don’t think anyone knows how critical this is. Can you imagine how many people could have died?”
Manchin said the issue is alarming in light of coal plant closures under U.S. EPA rules, the country’s growing reliance on gas and the inability within PJM to deliver gas to demand hubs during the polar vortex.