ROSEMEAD, Calif., July 25, 2001— The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission today established a methodology for calculating refunds owed to California electricity buyers and ordered a limited, expedited hearing to establish the facts needed to calculate the exact refund amount.
Refunds will be calculated for electricity sold on or after October 2, 2000, and apply only to spot market transactions. Southern California Edison issued this statement in response:
Today’s FERC order is one step in a long process to redress the substantial harm suffered by the consumers, taxpayers, utilities and economy of California as a result of the exercise of market power by sellers in the wholesale electricity market.
FERC’s order provides for refunds of some of the unjust and unreasonable rates charged in California after October 2, 2000. This order does not address, however, the hundreds of millions of dollars in excess costs paid by SCE throughout the summer of 2000.
FERC has not only the authority but also the duty to order refunds back to at least May 2000, when the exercise of market power and unreasonable pricing became clear. In addition, SCE believes that the remedies proposed by FERC should not be limited to the ISO and PX spot markets, but to all markets tainted by the exercise of market power.
Exhaustive administrative and legal appeals will no doubt follow this order pushing final resolution of these issues far off into the future.
An Edison International (NYSE: EIX – news) company, Southern California Edison is one of the nation’s largest electric utilities, serving a population of more than 11 million via 4.3 million customer accounts in a 50,000-square-mile service area within central, coastal and Southern California.