Power industry crisis of confidence requires new framework for workable competitive power markets


WASHINGTON, Feb. 28, 2002 — The first comprehensive study defining the basic elements needed to create workable, competitive power markets will be outlined at a briefing in Washington March 5.

In the wake of recent events, on the heels of the California power shortage and the most recent bankruptcy filings, there exists a crisis in confidence within the United States power markets. The study, “Energy Restructuring at a Crossroads,” by Cambridge Energy Research Associates (CERA) and Accenture, has involved more than 40 energy companies, industry associations and regulators in an effort to identify the basic elements that must be in-place for competitive markets to function.

“For a competitive electric power industry to emerge from the crisis of confidence currently gripping many industry participants, a specific minimum set of market, regulatory, financial and strategic requirements must be met,” said CERA Senior Director of North American Electric Power Larry Makovich.

“The United States power industry is at a restructuring crossroads of three paths: it can continue along the path of experimental deregulation, backtrack to comprehensive regulation, or move forward to power markets that work,” said Francis X. Shields, Accenture Partner for Competitive Energy Markets. “Building the path to workable power markets requires building a consensus around lessons learned from power markets that work. This study is a first attempt to identify the basic elements needed for the industry to move forward.”

Cambridge Energy Research Associates is an advisor to major international companies, financial institutions and organizations, delivering strategic knowledge and independent analysis on energy markets, geopolitics, industry trends and strategy. CERA is headquartered in Cambridge, Mass., and has offices in Bangkok, Beijing, Calgary, Houston, Mexico City, Moscow, Oakland, Oslo, Paris, Sao Paolo, Seoul and Washington, D.C.

Accenture is a management and technology services organization. Through its network of businesses approach — in which the company enhances its consulting and outsourcing expertise through alliances, affiliated companies and other capabilities — Accenture delivers innovations that help clients across all industries quickly realize their visions. With more than 75,000 people in 47 countries, the company generated net revenues of $11.44 billion for the fiscal year ended Aug. 31, 2001. Its home page is www.accenture.com.

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