Energy Policy Update

A blog about energy resources, energy policy, and their effects on society and the environment. From fossil fuels to renewable energy, electricity to natural gas and oil, traditional technologies to innovations, this blog presents an unbiased look at the past, present, and future of energy.

This blog site is published by and reflects the personal views of Todd Griset, in his individual capacity. It does not necessarily represent the views of his law firm or clients, and is not sponsored or endorsed by them. The purpose of this blog site is to assist in dissemination of information about energy policy and related issues, but no representation is made about the accuracy of the information. The information contained in this blog site is provided only as general information for education purposes, and blog topics may or may not be updated subsequent to their initial posting.

By using this blog site you understand that this information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to constitute legal advice. This blog site should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed attorney in your state. This blog site is not intended to be advertising and Todd Griset does not wish to represent anyone desiring representation based upon viewing this blog site in a state where this blog site fails to comply with all laws and ethical rules of that state.

Recent Blog Posts

  • The New York legislature has unanimously passed a bill establishing an energy storage deployment program.  The bill, S. 5190, aims to promote the installation of energy storage systems.  The bill now awaits Governor Andrew Cuomo's signature, before it can take effect.New York is in the midst of major shifts in its energy policy.  Governor Cuomo's "Reforming the Energy Vision" or REV process aims to build a clean, more resilient, and affordable energy system for all New Yorkers.  As part of... More
  • Montana utility regulators are preparing to study the costs and benefits of distributed solar energy projects and other customer-generators.  The results could reshape the way net-metered customers are charged for electric service, including the creation of a separate service classification and rates for customer-generators.Earlier this year, the Montana legislature enacted House Bill 219, a law requiring utility NorthWestern Corp. to "conduct a study of the costs and benefits of customer-generators," for submission to the state Public Service Commission to inform... More
  • U.S. regulators are evaluating an application by a company seeking to explore for oil in the Arctic.On June 12, the federal Bureau of Ocean Energy Management or BOEM announced that it had deemed Eni US Operating Co.'s exploration plan (or EP) to be submitted, and invited public comment on the plan. The company is a subsidiary of the Italian gas and oil company Eni S.p.A.Under federal law, an Exploration Plan describes all exploration activities planned by the operator for... More
  • Federal energy regulators overseeing the development of a new interstate natural gas pipeline have announced the opening of an investigation, following the inadvertent release of about 2 million gallons of drilling fluid from a horizontal directional drill operation.Rover Pipeline LLC describes itself as a new interstate natural gas pipeline that is designed to transport 3.25 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/day) of natural gas to markets in the Midwest, Northeast, East Coast, Gulf Coast and Canada.  The... More
  • The U.S. Forest Service has released its final approvals for two major electricity transmission lines proposed for development across several western states, issuing Records of Decision for the TransWest Express and Energy Gateway South projects.The TransWest Express Transmission Project is a high-voltage, direct current regional electric transmission system proposed by TransWest Express LLC.  The 600-kilovolt, bidirectional transmission line would connect the Marketplace Hub near Las Vegas, Nevada, to south-central Wyoming.  A core value of the project is its ability to provide... More
  • The North American bulk power system is expected to have sufficient resources to meet summer electricity demand for 2017, according to the U.S. electric reliability organization NERC.The North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) is a not-for-profit international regulatory authority whose mission is to assure the reliability of the bulk power system in North America.  Operating under the oversight of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, NERC develops and enforces mandatory reliability standards.NERC publishes an annual Summer Reliability Assessment.  This document identifies,... More
  • A recent report by the New England wholesale electricity market's monitor sheds light on the region's portfolio of generation resources, and how they are changing.The ISO New England, Inc. Internal Market Monitor's 2016 Annual Markets Report provides information on the average age of the region's generation fleet, broken down by fuel type.Figure 2-4, 2016 Annual Markets Report.According to the report, the average age of New England’s generators is 30 years, but different resource types show diverging average ages.  New England's... More
  • Overall, the New England wholesale electricity markets performed well in 2016, according to a report by the grid operator's internal market monitor.ISO New England, Inc. operates the bulk transmission system and wholesale electricity markets for most of New England.  ISO-NE's Internal Market Monitor is an internal ISO department charged with performing regular market assessments and reporting, as well as "the daily detection and mitigation (lessening) of the effects of any anti-competitive behavior in the wholesale markets or market... More
  • President Trump's first proposed budget for Fiscal Year 2018 includes a line item for "Lease oil and gas in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR)".  According to the budget proposal, opening ANWR to oil and gas leasing would reduce the federal deficit by a total of $1.8 billion between 2018 and 2027.  A more detailed departmental overview notes, "the budget includes proposed legislation to authorize leasing for oil and gas in the coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife... More
  • The New York Power Authority has announced plans to develop a microgrid to supply steam and electricity to the Governor Nelson A. Rockefeller Empire State Plaza in Albany.NYPA, officially known as the Power Authority of the State of New York, is a state-level public power organization, operating power plants and transmission lines.On May 22, 2017, NYPA announced its plans to convert a former waste-recovery steam plant located in Albany into a site for two new 8-megawatt natural gas-fired turbine generators... More
  • Maine Governor Paul LePage has proposed legislation that would authorize the state to take over ownership of a dam and water storage project on the U.S.-Canada border.As initially printed on June 1, 2017, LD 1626 would be a resolve authorizing a Maine state agency to assume ownership of the Forest City Project.  The Forest City Project is located on the East Branch of the St. Croix River which forms the international boundary between the United States and Canada.... More
  • Canadian oil company Husky Energy has announced a decision to develop its West White Rose Project offshore Newfoundland and Labrador.  Meanwhile the U.S. National Marine Fisheries Service has proposed authorizing the take of marine mammals incidental to geophysical surveys in the Atlantic Ocean relating to hydrocarbon development.Husky Energy is a Canada-based publicly traded energy company.  It is the operator of the White Rose field, discovered in 1984 about 350 kilometres east of St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador, in water depths... More
  • President Donald Trump has announced that the U.S. will withdraw from the Paris climate agreement reached in 2015.  Here is a quick roundup of relevant resources.On December 12, 2015, the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change adopted Decision 1/CP.21, adopting the Paris Agreement under that convention.  The Paris climate accord calls for signatories to limit the increase in the global average temperature to "well below" 2 °C above pre-industrial levels (and to pursue efforts to limit... More
  • Federal energy regulators have used both regulatory and more informal collaborative approaches to address the threat to the electric grid posed by electromagnetic pulses and geomagnetic disturbances, according to testimony delivered on May 4, 2017, to the U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.Last month, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission acting chairman Cheryl LaFleur spoke to the Senate committee on the Commission's work in protecting the reliability of the U.S. grid against naturally-occurring and manmade threats.  In her testimony, she... More
  • As states enact and pursue energy policy goals such as sourcing power from solar, offshore wind, or other "clean energy" resources, here's a quick look at some of the regional renewable procurement activity ongoing in New England: New England Clean Energy RFP: This "three-State Clean Energy RFP" focused on Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island.  Although each state enacted its own statutory framework for procurement, soliciting parties including the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Policy and utilities in Massachusetts and Rhode... More