PUCT approves with conditions Entergy Texas’ move to MISO

AUSTIN, Texas, Oct. 26, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — The Public Utility Commission of Texas today approved with conditions Entergy Texas, Inc.’s proposal to join the Midwest Independent Transmission System Operator, Inc. (MISO), a large regional transmission organization, paving the way to nearly a quarter-billion-dollars in projected savings for customers over the next decade.

The decision gives approval with conditions to Entergy Texas’ request to transfer functional control of its transmission facilities to MISO, a move expected to occur in December 2013.

“We are pleased with today’s ruling from the Commission, approving the proposed settlement as supplemented at yesterday’s open meeting,” said Sallie Rainer, president and CEO of Entergy Texas, Inc. “The Commission’s action today will allow Entergy Texas to move forward with its plans and preparations to join MISO, a move expected to bring substantial benefits to our customers.”

In May 2011, Entergy Texas filed a report detailing the expected benefits of joining MISO and in April, filed its request to transfer functional control of its transmission system to that organization. The extensive analysis supporting the filing projected the move would save Entergy Texas electric customers $225 million on a net present value basis, based on a study period of 2013 to 2022. The transfer is also expected to improve reliability and provide for more competitive and diverse generation resources.

The settlement agreement was executed by the commission staff, Texas Industrial Energy Consumers, East Texas Electric Cooperatives, Southwestern Public Service Company, Entergy Texas, MISO and the Coalition of Entergy Cities. The settlement agreement was reviewed and recommended for approval by a panel of three administrative law judges October 1. At yesterday’s open meeting, the commission supplemented the settlement with some additional conditions agreed upon by the signatories to the settlement.

MISO both operates a market for electricity and manages energy delivery across the vast transmission grid under its control. MISO facilitates the buying and selling of electricity, while continually balancing supply and demand, managing congestion on the transmission grid and creating an open, competitive market for industry participants. MISO is the nation’s first regional transmission organization, and one of its largest.

“MISO’s massive footprint, its preferred transmission cost allocation methodology and its proven experience in operating day-ahead and real-time regional energy markets are what make it a great fit for Entergy Texas,” said Rainer. “Entry into MISO helps us prepare our power generation and delivery systems to meet the demands of a new century and maximize value for our customers.”

The savings projected with MISO are largely attributable to its organized power markets, which allow for a more efficient commitment and dispatch of generating plants, to economies of scale offered by an RTO of MISO’s size, and to MISO’s transmission cost allocation methodology that equitably allocates the costs of transmission projects to those receiving the benefits from those projects. MISO currently operates across 11 states and one Canadian province. With the addition of the Entergy Operating Companies to its membership, MISO will stretch from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico.