CHICAGO, May 29, 2002 — Commonwealth Edison and Illinois Power announced Wednesday that they will join the PJM Interconnection, LLC. The companies notified the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) of its intent in a filing submitted late Tuesday.
The FERC in April asked members of the former Alliance RTO to declare by May 28 their intentions for participation in a regional transmission organization (RTO). The companies expect to draw up memoranda of understanding with PJM shortly.
Illinois Power told FERC its preferred means of participation is through an independent transmission company headed by National Grid, along with other companies such as Commonwealth Edison and American Electric Power. Illinois Power told FERC it would join PJM as a transmission owner, should it not join through an independent transmission company.
“We believe that PJM is the best option for our company and our customers. It is clear that Exelon’s primary wholesale energy trading partners and suppliers are in the east, and our strongest interconnections are to the east,” said Betsy Moler, Senior Vice President of Government Affairs and Policy of Exelon Corporation, ComEd’s parent company.
Moler added that ComEd customers will get a mature marketplace more quickly with real choices under PJM than with MISO. “The PJM Interconnection has a strong presence in key eastern markets, and market structures already in place for the region that are similar to what FERC is proposing in its current standard market design. The company also has a long track record of successfully operating energy markets and is the model for the industry. We will join the PJM organization as soon as is practical.”
“The relationship with PJM will connect us and our customers with a robust electricity marketplace that is already up and running,” said Illinois Power Senior Vice President and General Counsel Kathy Patton.
“The PJM region has already established the infrastructure, policies and business practices for operating a market. This will bring the advantages of a larger competitive market into our region much more quickly than other alternatives available to us,” Patton said. “Once the market is fully integrated into this region, customers will have full access to resources in a vast area from Illinois to the East Coast with a single market transaction.”
The two companies join American Electric Power and Dayton Power & Light who also notified FERC of their intentions to join PJM. ComEd, Illinois Power and AEP are proposing the formation of an independent transmission company that would be managed by National Grid while operating under the authority of the PJM Interconnection.
“We believe an independent transmission company would provide the most efficient and most economical integration of these companies into PJM,” Moler said. “The former Alliance companies have spent more than $70 million to develop the infrastructure necessary to create an independent transmission organization. Continuing as an independent transmission company, while under the authority of PJM, allows us to use these existing systems to the maximum extent possible.”
Commonwealth Edison is a unit of Chicago-based Exelon Corp., one the nation’s largest electric utilities with more than $15 billion in revenues and a customer base of five million. ComEd provides service to more than 3.4 million customers across Northern Illinois, or 70 percent of the state’s population.
Illinois Power is an energy delivery company based in Decatur, Ill., and serves more than 650,000 natural gas and electricity customers in a 15,000 square-mile territory across Illinois. Illinois Power is a subsidiary of Dynegy Inc., a provider of energy and communications solutions to customers in North America, the United Kingdom and Europe.