Paul Hastings WDC Energy Team Scores Important Victory for Renewable Energy
Washington, D.C.-- Paul Hastings, a leading global law firm, announced today that the firm represented Idaho Wind Partners (IWP), a partnership that developed a 183 MW wind power farm in Idaho, in this regulatory proceeding. GE Financial Services is a tax equity participant in IWP.
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) last week confirmed a declaratory order that is very favorable to IWP and renewable energy developers and protects renewable facilities from curtailments. In a state commission proceeding, Idaho Power sought the right to curtail purchases of power under certain of its existing Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) during “light loading” periods (when the utility’s base load generation would ostensibly need to be curtailed to accommodate the alternative energy on its system), claiming a FERC regulation in support. IWP previously secured a favorable declaratory order from FERC that ruled that the utility’s proposal would violate federal law because that curtailment right was not provided for in the twenty-year PPA negotiated with IWP. Opponents sought rehearing, which IWP successfully defended against. FERC denied the rehearing requests and reiterated in its Rehearing Order that Idaho Power should have included such a curtailment right into the PPA, and it cannot now invoke a FERC regulation to unilaterally amend the PPA to allow for such curtailments.
These FERC Orders are significant because they apply nationwide and protect the renewable generators’ revenue streams, which is very important for intermittent resources like wind generators, and because FERC issued its favorable orders while the state commission proceeding was still ongoing.
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