Greenhouse Reduction Goal Shouldn’t Drive Wrong Decision on Clean Energy Deal

By Cynthia A. Arcate 16 January, 2018
The cold weather over the last few weeks has resulted in a significant amount of electricity being generated by coal and oil in New England. But, on an annual basis, the amount of oil- and coal-generated electricity will still be about 1% or less of all of the generation in the region. It’s important to keep that fact in perspective, especially as the Commonwealth of Massachusetts’ clean energy solicitation is awarded. The Boston Globe editorial last week implied that it

Time to Hit the Reset Button on Utility Distribution Company Ratemaking

By Cynthia A. Arcate 24 April, 2017
For years, many have been lamenting the ever-increasing number of rate mechanisms which fall outside of the base rate review process for utility distribution companies. There are roughly a dozen reconciliation charges, trackers and automatic adjustment charges on the bill for each gas and electric utility. Call them what you will, they all do the same thing: allow utilities to recover 100 percent of certain costs of providing service separate from their total cost of service. This is a problem

All Consumers Are the Big Winners with the Cancellation of Kinder Morgan Pipeline

By Cynthia A. Arcate 26 April, 2016
There has been much hand-wringing and crystal ball reading in the days since Kinder Morgan announced its plans to cancel their Northeast Direct natural gas pipeline project. As usual, some of the analysis is spot on but most paint too broad a brush in identifying winners and losers, especially as it relates to consumers. One of the biggest fallacies I’ve seen presented since Kinder Morgan’s announcement last week is that industrial consumers will be hurt from the fallout because they

The Competitive Electricity Market Works to Meet Reliability Needs of the Region

By Cynthia A. Arcate 26 February, 2016
In early February, ISO-NE conducted the annual auction for electricity capacity to serve the region. Under this competitive regime, ISO-NE seeks commitments from generators and other sources of supply, including renewable energy, energy efficiency and demand response, for a three-year period in the future, in this case, 2019-2020. The auction was successful in two significant ways; first, supply was procured for all zones or areas of the region with no deficiencies. In other words, there was more than enough interest
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