News Briefs

Legal and regulatory

Bush gives Yucca thumbs-up, Vegas in uproar: President Bush has backed Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham’s choice of Yucca Mountain for use as the nation’s long-term nuclear waste storage site. Yucca Mountain is located north of Las Vegas. If all approvals run smoothly, the site could start storing material by 2010. In response to the announcement, Las Vegas Mayor Oscar B. Goodman criticized President Bush for “neglecting his duty to protect the nation’s welfare and safety” by approving the plan. He also stated that the city of Las Vegas could respond with a lawsuit naming the President as a defendant.

Montana PSC approves sale:The Montana Public Service Commission (PSC) approved a stipulated agreement that will allow The Montana Power Co. to move forward on the sale of its electric and natural gas trans-mission and distribution utility to NorthWestern Corporation of Sioux Falls, S.D. and become a stand-alone telecommunications company under Touch America. The commission’s approval of the stipulation both approves the sale and, upon closing of the utility sale, also results in resolution of the issue of stranded costs for Montana Power.

Calif. denies $219 million settlement: The California Public Utility Commission has rejected a proposed Sempra Energy settlement which sought to divide power profits between San Diego Gas & Electric Co. customers and shareholders. It seems likely the case will be taken to court, insiders stated.

Transmission

Mitsubishi Electric, Toshiba integrate: Mitsubishi Electric Corp. and Toshiba Corp. announced that they will integrate their power T&D businesses in a joint venture company that will be incorporated in April this year and start business on Oct. 1, 2002. The new joint venture will bring together the sales, engineering, development and manufacturing functions of the parent companies, the corporations stated.

MISO, PJM, SPP desire single market: The Midwest Independent Transmission System Operator (MISO), PJM Interconnection (PJM) and Southwest Power Pool (SPP) announced the formation of a single market design forum to identify the needs of market participants and promote efficiency in electric markets. MISO, PJM and SPP recently unveiled a vision to achieve a common single wholesale market with a “one-stop shop.” The organizations executed a letter of intent to develop a joint and common wholesale market for electricity producers and consumers in all or part of 27 eastern, mid-Atlantic and Midwestern states, the District of Columbia and the Canadian Province of Manitoba.

APS, SRP receive approval to build line: Arizona Public Service Co. (APS) and Salt River Project (SRP) received approval from the Arizona Corporation Commission to build a new high-voltage transmission line project, which includes 37 miles of a new 500 kV transmission line. The project is jointly owned by APS and SRP and is slated for completion in the summer of 2003.

FERC approves Lake Erie open season: The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has granted TransEnergie U.S. Ltd and Hydro One authority to sell transmission rights for the proposed Lake Erie Link, which will consist of bi-directional high voltage direct current facilities connecting the transmission grids of Ontario and the U.S.

Duke, CP&L won’t go South: Duke Energy, CP&L and South Carolina Electric & Gas issued a statement that they “remain committed to the GridSouth RTO, but due to regulatory uncertainties in the RTO arena, the companies are withdrawing their applications before the Public Service Commission of South Carolina and the North Carolina Utilities Commission to transfer functional control of their electric transmission assets to GridSouth.” The companies also stated that they intend to file new applications–with a revised GridSouth structure–in the “near future.”

Projects & contracts

Hydro One, Cap Gemini sign outsourcing agreement: Hydro One and Cap Gemini Ernst & Young Canada have finalized an agreement that a Cap Gemini subsidiary, Inergi, will manage and operate existing business processes and technology-enabled services for Hydro One. Under this 10-year, $1 billion (CDN) agreement, 900 employees have been transferred from Hydro One to Inergi.

Cirro Corp. forms alliance with Aquila: Officials with retail electric provider Cirro Corp. have announced a five-year, contractual relationship with wholesale energy merchant Aquila Inc. that will significantly strengthen Cirro’s buying power to purchase electricity from energy suppliers on behalf of Texas customers, according to the company. As part of the contract, Aquila will be granted a 10 percent equity stake in Cirro.

Executive appointments

NERC: Bruce A. Scherr has been appointed to the independent Board of Trustees.

Washington Group: Cynthia Stinger is Vice President of government affairs.

Cinergy: Gary L. Lavey becomes Vice President of global risk management; Steven E. Schrader becomes Vice President of investor relations.

American Electric Power: Dave Trego has been named Vice President of telecommunications.

CMS Energy: Michael D. VanHemert has been promoted to Vice President and Secretary of the diversified energy business unit, CMS Enterprises.

DOE: William T. McCormick, Jr., CMS Energy Corp. Chairman and CEO, has been appointed to serve on the Electricity Advisory Board.

Dynegy: Matt K. Schatzman is President and CEO of the company’s energy convergence business.

KWI: Thomas M. Ray III has been appointed President and General Manager of North American operations.

Puget Sound Energy: Stephen P. Reynolds is President and CEO.

National Water & Power: Randy Lintecum is Chairman and CEO.

Babcock & Wilcox: James W. Malone has been named Vice President of sales and marketing.

AGL Resources: Paula Rosput, Chief Executive, has been additionally named Board Chairman.

Harris Group Inc.: Bill Ward is Operations Director, energy, and Mike Burns is Director, oil and gas.

IntercontinentalExchange (ICE): Martin Wadhwani has been appointed Vice President of market data services.

FirstEnergy: H. Peter Burg has been named Chairman and CEO.

EPRI: Clark W. Gellings is Vice President of the power delivery and utilization sector.

Alliant Energy: Edward M. Gleason, Vice President, Treasurer and Corporate Secretary, retired on March 31. Thomas L. Hanson has been promoted to Vice President and Treasurer to replace him.

Wisconsin Energy Corp.: George E. Wardeberg will retire as Vice Chairman this month.

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The Clarion Energy Content Team is made up of editors from various publications, including POWERGRID International, Power Engineering, Renewable Energy World, Hydro Review, Smart Energy International, and Power Engineering International. Contact the content lead for this publication at Jennifer.Runyon@ClarionEvents.com.

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