American Electric Power and Central and South West Corp. reached
a settlement with FERC trial staff that resolves the market power
and rate issues relating to the pending merger of the two
companies. Under terms of the settlement, AEP would transfer the
operation and control of its bulk transmission facilities located
in Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, Tennessee, Virginia and West
Virginia to a regional transmission organization (RTO). The
settlement also covers rates for transmission services and
ancillary services and confirms, subject to FERC guidance on
certain elements, that the previously announced generation
divestiture program will satisfy the market power concerns of the
FERC staff. Once the merger is completed, the new company will be
serve 4.7 million electric customers in 11 states.
El Paso Natural Gas' planned Willcox lateral to the Mexican
border (CP99-322) will divert up to 130 MMcf/d from mainline
service to firm customers in Arizona, according to Southwest Gas.
The pipeline has proposed construction of the 55-mile, 20" lateral
from the Willcox Compressor station to two points on the border
with Mexico to serve two and possibly three power plants. The gas
would serve an existing power plant near the City of Hermosillo,
another plant to be built in that area and possibly one near the
City of Agua Prieta, Sonora, Mexico. Southwest Gas claims the
application for the lateral shows a reduction in available capacity
used to serve existing El Paso customers. El Paso claims existing
customers will not be impacted. The distributor asked FERC for a
technical conference and a hearing.
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