Ninth Circuit Rejects Challenge to FERC Decisions on BPA Oversupply

On August 10, 2015, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals (Ninth Circuit) rejected a challenge to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s (FERC) decisions finding that Bonneville Power Administration’s (BPA) policies discriminated against wind generators. The Ninth Circuit did not address the merits of the appeal, but found that the BPA’s wholesale preference customers did not have statutory standing to challenge FERC’s decision.   [Read more…]

FERC Approves BPA Oversupply Management Protocol and Rates

On October 16, 2014, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) issued two orders accepting Bonneville Power Administration’s (BPA) controversial oversupply management protocol and oversupply rates. FERC accepted BPA’s filings as temporary solutions to address the problem of high levels of generation that exceeded the available end use consumer loads on BPA’s system. This is called “oversupply” because BPA has too much generation. FERC found that BPA’s policy to displace and compensate wind generators during oversupply events is equitable and results in comparability in the provision of transmission service.   [Read more…]

Ninth Circuit Remands DSI Lookback to BPA

On September 18, 2014, the federal Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals held that Bonneville Power Administration’s (BPA) decision not to seek a refund of some of the amounts unlawfully paid to Alcoa could be arbitrary, capricious, or an abuse of discretion.  In a 2-1 decision, the appellate court remanded the matter back to BPA to more carefully consider whether BPA should seek a partial refund from Alcoa.  The Ninth Circuit also concluded that BPA has no general constitutional or statutory duty to seek a refund any time it makes an unlawful payment, and that BPA reasonably explained why it did not seek a refund from Port Townsend Paper.  A third judge concurred with most of the ruling, but would have directed BPA to consider seeking larger refunds from Alcoa.  [Read more…]