WASHINGTON, DC — In an effort to enhance competition and reduce prices in the nation's bulk power markets, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) announced its intention to develop a standardized wholesale electricity market.

The goals, according to the commission, are more choice and improved services for market participants; lower prices from reduced transaction costs and wider trade opportunities; improved reliability through better grid operations and expedited infrastructure improvements; and certainty about market rules and cost recovery for greater investor confidence.

Chairman Pat Wood III stated, “As always, our purpose is simple: reliable electricity at lower prices for all Americans. The most effective way to achieve this goal is to standardize market design and transmission service around the country.”

A significant challenge, the commission noted in a working paper on this issue, is to balance the need for standardization and streamlined operations with the need for regional differences and market innovation.

FERC has collected comments and will issue a notice of proposed rulemaking this summer. It will consider all additional comments before formulating a final rule.

Publication date: 03/11/2002