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New England Strives for Consensus on Wholesale Electricity Market Reforms

Publisher: RTO Insider
November 19, 2017

Sebastian Lombardi was quoted in an article, "New England Strives for CASPR Consensus," published in RTO Insider. Based on remarks made at the annual Northeast Energy and Commerce Association's Power Markets Conference, the article discusses New England's effort to accommodate state-sponsored renewable energy resources, while preserving competitive wholesale electricity markets. As part of the New England Power Pool's (NEPOOL) Integrating Markets and Public Policy (IMAPP) initiative, the regional grid operator (ISO New England or ISO-NE) has developed a new wholesale market design proposal, called Competitive Auctions with Sponsored Policy Resources (CASPR). ISO-NE's proposal is expected to be voted on at an upcoming NEPOOL Participants Committee meeting in December before any filing is made with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). Lombardi, who serves as counsel to NEPOOL, said "We're hoping for consensus because NEPOOL can't have an affirmative institutional position without some broad agreement being reached." Lombardi added that the NEPOOL Markets Committee considered a number of proposed modifications to ISO-NE's CASPR proposal. "Although some of those proposals were close to getting broad support, at this stage none of them have reached the requisite support needed for NEPOOL approval, but sometimes three weeks is a lifetime in a stakeholder process," Lombardi said. "Folks have been discussing this for a long time and we're now getting to the endpoint and folks are going to have to make some hard decisions." He added that New England has a unique set of rules and governance arrangements whereby "if NEPOOL were to support something that was different from what the ISO wants to file, more than one proposal could be teed up to FERC on equal legal footing, which would provide FERC some optionality."


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