Pennfuture's e-cubed

A settlement reached today by Citizens for extend the rate cap to December 31, 2010. How Pennsylvania's Future (PennFuture) and 11 other much is the T&D rate cap extension worth when parties with PECO Energy Company in the Exelon energy prices are shooting up? One yardstick to merger case means a clean and green bonanza for answer that question would be the $194 million Philadelphia-area electricity customers. Consumers distribution rate increase that the PUC approved for will receive $120 million of rate cuts; the transmission and distribution (T&D) rate cap that would expire on December 31, 2006 will be Renewable energy and energy conservation will extended for another four years; programs for low- also get a $19.2 million boost from the settlement, income customers will be substantially expanded; with PECO Energy paying $12 million to the customer service and reliability performance will Pennsylvania Energy Development Authority improve; economic development programs will (PEDA) “for the purposes of funding renewable increase; net metering rules will support and not energy, energy efficiency and energy conservation” hinder distributed generation; and renewable and $7.2 million to the Sustainable Development energy and conservation funding will be boosted. Fund. PennFuture expects this funding to help build approximately 200 megawatts of new renewable The rate cuts won in this merger settlement are the generation and attract $200 million of private fourth round of separate rate cuts enjoyed by investment to Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania’s landmark Alternative Energy Portfolio Standard law, Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission approves the Energy Harvest program, the sustainable this settlement, PECO customers will have received development funds, and Pennsylvania’s vibrant rate cuts worth a total of at least $867 million, as a voluntary green energy market together with the result of the 1998 electricity restructuring case, the $19.2 million of renewable energy and conservation settlement of a securitization case, the benefits from the settlement means Pennsylvania is Exelon/PECO merger and now the Exelon/PSEG a great place for wind, solar, biomass, methane, merger. In a further financial boost for customers, both generation and transmission and distribution This settlement is also good for public health. Incredibly approximately 2,000 people die in In an energy world in turmoil, where oil, gasoline, Pennsylvania each year as a result of just soot from natural gas and even coal prices have increased by power plants, but renewable energy projects 100 percent to 400 percent in the last five years, reduce soot as well as smog, global warming PECO’s electricity prices are a startling exception emissions, mercury, and acid rain. Renewable to skyrocketing energy prices. PECO customers will energy and energy conservation protect the public pay less in constant dollars for electricity in 2006 health and the environment, reducing illness and than in 1996, even though the distribution rate cuts obtained in the first Exelon merger expire next year and an increase in the generation rate cap that is And what is good for the environment is good for part of the 1998 restructuring decision takes effect the economy. Clean energy investments bring jobs manufacturing facility opening in Ebensburg that In addition to rate cuts, this settlement gives consumers a four-year extension of the T&D rate cap that will otherwise expire on December 31, A major goal of PennFuture in this case was to 2006. Instead of expiring then, the settlement will improve the net metering rules in the PECO service C i t i z e n s f o r P e n n s y l v a n i a ’ s F u t u r e • 6 1 0 N . T h i r d S t . • H a r r i s b u r g , P A 1 7 1 0 1
1 . 8 0 0 . 3 2 1 . 7 7 7 5 ( i n P A ) • 7 1 7 . 2 1 4 . 7 9 2 0 • f a x : 7 1 7 . 2 1 4 . 7 9 2 7
e m a i l : i n f o @ p e n n f u t u r e . o r g w e b : w w w . p e n n f u t u r e . o r g
territory by requiring PECO to adopt rules In Exelon’s filing for merger approval at the Federal consistent with the excellent rules in place in New Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), Exelon Jersey. That goal has been achieved. PECO committed to divesting itself of 6600 megawatts of agreed to adopt New Jersey net metering rules in generation, most of that in PJM East. That is a its service territory. These rules will substantially substantial divestiture, and it played an important improve the economics of distributed generation role in winning FERC approval of the merger. In order for any of the terms of this settlement to be In addition to new net metering rules, the funding put into effect, the merger must close. The for renewable energy and energy conservation, and Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) consumer benefits, the settlement also increases must approve today’s settlement. Exelon must still funding to programs serving low-income customers win approval of the merger from the New Jersey unable to pay their utility bills by about $20 million Board of Public Utilities, and the merger case won’t and provides another $8 million to PEDA for be decided until 2006 in New Jersey. If the merger economic development projects that will benefit does not close, the rate cuts, the T&D rate cap ratepayers in the PECO service territory. extension, the renewable energy and energy PennFuture strongly supports increasing low- conservation funding, increases for low-income income assistance and knows that this increased assistance and much more would be lost. So funding will help prevent some shutoffs that then PennFuture hopes to hear good news from New force desperate families to use dangerous heating and lighting substitutes like kerosene heaters and In addition to PennFuture, parties settling the case before the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission The settlement also contains quantifiable (PUC) are the Office of Consumer Advocate, the commitments to improved reliability and customer Office of Small Business Advocate, the Office of service and to increased customer education and Trial Staff, the Department of Environmental outreach. The settlement further requires PECO to Protection, Action Alliance of Senior Citizens, the continue charitable donations at the current level of Association of Community Organizations for $3 million per year for at least another four years. Reform Now and the Tenants’ Action Group, the Finally, PECO will maintain the corporate Philadelphia Area Industrial Energy Users Group, headquarters for its distribution business in The Reinvestment Fund/Sustainable Development Philadelphia through at least December 31, 2010. Fund, Energy Coordinating Agency of Philadelphia C i t i z e n s f o r P e n n s y l v a n i a ’ s F u t u r e • 6 1 0 N . T h i r d S t . • H a r r i s b u r g , P A 1 7 1 0 1
1 . 8 0 0 . 3 2 1 . 7 7 7 5 ( i n P A ) • 7 1 7 . 2 1 4 . 7 9 2 0 • f a x : 7 1 7 . 2 1 4 . 7 9 2 7
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