Coronavirus: Electric Utility Sector Impacts — Week of April 6, 2020

Notable News Articles:

  • NYISO Voluntarily Sequesters Teams of Grid Operators to Ensure Reliability (Bloomberg, March 26, 2020)
    • Four teams of control-room operators have voluntarily agreed to sequester on-site
    • Grid operators in PJM, CAISO, ERCOT, are keeping grid operator teams isolated, but no other sequestrations yet.
  • Con Edison workforce getting battered by COVID cases: 170 confirmed cases, 3 deaths (Utility Dive, April 3, 2020)
  • Group of Democrat U.S. Senators Support Resolution Proposing Moratorium on Utility Disconnections and Rate Increases during COVID Crisis (Portland Business Journal, April 8, 2020; Resolution)


Notable FERC Filings:

  • NERC Cites COVID Concerns in Motion to Defer Implementation of Certain Reliability Standards; Requests Shortened Comment Period and Expedited Action (RM15-4; RM16-22; RM17-13; RD18-4)
  • FERC Actions on April 2 (FERC News Release, April 2, 2020)
    • FERC Issues Policy Statement Providing Regulatory Guidance on Energy Infrastructure, market, Reliability, and Security Matters.
      • Clarifies that FERC will give highest priority to filing made for purposes of reliability operation, including requests for cost recovery for business continuity purposes
    • Blanket waiver of tariff requirements on in-person meetings or notarized documents
    • Delegated authority to staff to act on uncontested requests for prospective waiver of certain obligations—effective until June 1, 2020
    • Delegated authority to allow staff to grant time extension requests for FERC Form No. 553, FERC 730 filings
    • Extended time for RTO/ISO uplift report filings.
    • Supplemental notice granting extensions of time for certain non-statutory deadlines, waiving regulations and shortening answer periods for motions for extensions of time due to the pandemic emergency.

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