The History and Future of Open Access Electric Transmission

In 1996, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission issued Order No. 888, the first in a series of orders that would establish a framework for open access electric transmission in the United States, “requiring all public utilities that own, control or operate facilities used for transmitting electric energy in interstate commerce to have on file open access non-discriminatory transmission tariffs that contain minimum terms and conditions of non-discriminatory service.”

Subsequently, the Commission issued Order No. 890 in 2007 and Order No. 1000 in 2011, further building on the open access policy developed in Order No. 888.  In 2021, the Commission issued an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking seeking comment on potential changes to the Commission’s open access framework.

On April 21, 2022, FERC issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking detailing revisions that the Commission proposed to make in its open access regulations.  In anticipation of the Commission’s upcoming major rulemaking on open access transmission, this white paper will provide a primer, detailing the history of the Commission’s open access transmission regulations, and reviewing its potential future as outlined in the 2022 NOPR.

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