FERC Flexes Its Muscle

Today the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission announced that it will investigate prices charged by two natural gas pipeline companies. The probe will determine whether both companies overcharged customers. The targets are Wyoming Interstate Company and Viking Gas Transmission Company. Viking connects Canadian natural gas to major pipelines in Wisconsin, North Dakota, and Minnesota; WIC transports through Colorado, Wyoming, and Utah. Both companies have 75 days to submit full cost of service and revenue information to FERC for analysis.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the market, FERC has sidelined JP Morgan Ventures Energy Corp. and laid down a six-month suspension of the company’s electric market-based sales rate authority beginning April 1, 2013. JP Morgan Ventures made factual misrepresentations and omitted information from filings to FERC and in communications with the California Independent System Operator, according to FERC. JP Morgan Ventures will still participate somewhat in wholesale energy markets during the suspension, but its rate will be capped at the higher of the applicable locational marginal price or its default energy bid.

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