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Federal Energy Regulatory Commission

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Many Commission decisions are challenged or enforced in the Federal courts. The Office of the Solicitor, OGC, has independent authority to defend the Commission in court, typically the U.S. Courts of Appeals, unless the matter goes to the U.S. Supreme Court.

The defense normally entails preparing motions and briefs and presenting oral arguments before three-judge panels. It may also involve responding to petitions for writ of mandamus and requests to stay the underlying Commission action. At times, the Office files briefs as a "friend of the court," and in certain limited circumstances also defends the Commission or enforces its initiatives in the U.S. district courts.

  1. National Parks Conservation Association v. FERC
    No. 19-72915 (9th Cir. filed 11/18/2019)
      Order granting extension of time to commence and complete construction of Eagle Mountain pumped storage hydroelectric project; denial of request to intervene as a party in post-licensing proceeding. Eagle Crest Energy Co., 167 FERC  61,117 PDF (2019), reh'g denied, 168 FERC 61,186 PDF (2019).
      FERC Docket No. P-13123

  2. California Pub. Utils. Comm’n, et al. v. FERC
    No. 19-72897 (9th Cir. filed 11/15/2019)

  3. California Pub. Utils. Comm’n, et al. v. FERC
    No. 19-72886 and 72925 (9th Cir. filed 11/14/2019)
      Allegations that PG&E and SoCal Edison violated Order 890 obligation to conduct an open, coordinated, and transparent transmission planning process, by failing to allow stakeholder input and review. Cal. Pub. Utils. Comm’n, et al. v. Pac. Gas & Elec. Co., 164 FERC  61,161 PDF (2018), reh'g denied, 168 FERC 61,171 PDF (2019); and S. Cal. Edison Co., 164 FERC  61,160 PDF (2018), reh'g denied, 168 FERC 61,170 PDF (2019).
      FERC Docket No. EL17-45, et al.

  4. Kentucky Municipal Energy Agency, et al. v. FERC
    No. 19-1236 and 19-1237 (D.C. Cir. filed 11/8/2019)
      Order removing a market power mitigation measure imposed to resolve horizontal market power concerns originating from 1998 utility merger and 2006 withdrawal from Midcontinent ISO. Louisville Gas and Elec. Co. and Kentucky Utils. Co., 166 FERC  61,206 PDF (2019), reh'g denied, 168 FERC 61,152 PDF (2019).
      FERC Docket No. EC98-2, et al.

  5. Belmont Municipal Light Dept., et al. v. FERC
    No. 19-1224 (D.C. Cir. filed 10/24/2019)
      ISO-NE filing of proposed tariff revisions, implementing winter reliability program for 14th and 15th Forward Capacity Auctions, to compensate eligible resources for maintaining inventoried energy during winters of 2023-2024 and 2024-2025. ISO New England, Inc., Notice of Filing Taking Effect by Operation of Law PDF (Aug. 6, 2019), and Notice of Denial of Rehearing by Operation of Law, 169 FERC 61,013 PDF (Oct. 7, 2019).
      FERC Docket No. ER19-1428

  6. Shell Energy North America (US) L.P. v. FERC
    No. 19-1218 (D.C. Cir. filed 10/21/2019)
      Denial of late intervention, after Commission denied PJM request for waiver of Financial Transmission Rights (FTR) liquidation rules, following liquidation of defaulted FTR portfolio of GreenHat Energy. PJM Interconnection, L.L.C., 167 FERC  61,209 PDF (2019), reh'g denied, 168 FERC 61,104 PDF (2019).
      FERC Docket No. ER18-2068

  7. International Transmission Co., et al. v. FERC
    No. 19-1190 (D.C. Cir. filed 9/11/2019)
      Order granting complaint in part, reducing (but not eliminating) return on equity rate adder for independent, stand-alone transmission companies. Consumers Energy Co., et al. v. International Transmission Co., et al., 165 FERC 61,021 PDF (2018), reh’g denied, 168 FERC 61,035 PDF (2019).
      FERC Docket No. EL18-1840

  8. Stonegate Power, LLC v. FERC
    No. 19-1178 (D.C. Cir. filed 9/5/2019)
      Place in PJM interconnection queue for Stonegate Gateway Energy Center project; project’s suspension period and milestone deadlines. Stonegate Power, LLC v. PJM Interconnection, L.L.C., 167 FERC 61,014 PDF (2019), reh’g denied, 168 FERC 61,019 PDF (2019).
      FERC Docket No. EL19-9

  9. Brett Harding Duxbury v. FERC
    No. 19-72102 (9th Cir. filed 8/19/2019)
      Amendment of license for Kern River No. 3 hydroelectric project to address recreational whitewater flow releases. Southern California Edison, 166 FERC 62,049 PDF (2019), reh’g denied, 167 FERC 61,243 PDF (2019).
      FERC Docket No. P-2290

  10. Linden VFT, LLC v. FERC
    No. 19-1170 (D.C. Cir. filed 8/19/2019)
      Cost allocation associated with certain transmission projects (Targeted Market Efficiency Projects). PJM Interconnection, L.L.C., 164 FERC 61,002 PDF (2018), order on reh’g & compliance, 167 FERC 61,233 PDF (2019).
      FERC Docket No. ER18-613, et al.

  11. System Energy Resources, Inc. v. FERC
    No. 19-1168 (D.C. Cir. filed 8/19/2019)
      Order dismissing in part and setting for hearing in part Louisiana PSC complaint against System Energy Resources (which sells electric power produced by Grand Gulf Nuclear Station to Entergy operating companies), claiming that return on equity, capital structure and depreciation rates are unjust and unreasonable; hearing established on ROE issue. Louisiana Pub. Serv. Comm’n v. System Energy Resources, Inc., 164 FERC 61,134 PDF (2018), reh’g dismissed, 167 FERC 61,240 PDF (2019).
      FERC Docket No. El18-142

  12. Algignis, Inc. v. FERC
    No. 19-1169 (D.C. Cir. filed 8/15/2019)
      Dismissal of applications for preliminary permits at 60 nuclear power plant sites, to develop algae cultivation and retention ponds using waste heat from the output of adjacent nuclear facilities. Algignis, Inc., 167 FERC 61,244 PDF (2019), denying rehearing of 2/22/19 staff letter.
      FERC Docket No. P-14896, et al.

  13. Panhandle Eastern Pipe Line Co., LP v. FERC
    No. 19-1154 (D.C. Cir. filed 7/24/2019)
      Investigation into Panhandle’s existing rates, for possible over-recovery of revenues in relation to costs. Panhandle Eastern Pipe Line Co., LP, 166 FERC 61,032 PDF (2019), reh’g denied, 167 FERC 61,181 PDF (2019).
      FERC Docket No. RP19-78

  14. North Carolina Utils. Comm’n v. FERC
    No. 19-1144 (D.C. Cir. filed 7/12/2019)
      Negotiated rates for service on Transco’s Atlantic Sunrise Pipeline Project; protection of project shippers against exercise of pipeline market power. Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Co., 164 FERC 61,112 PDF (2018), order on reh’g, 167 FERC 61,144 PDF (2019).
      FERC Docket No. RP18-987, et al.

  15. National Ass’n of Reg. Util. Commissioners and Am. Public Power Ass’n, et al. v.
    Nos. 19-1142 and 19-1147 (D.C. Cir. filed 7/11/2019)
      Amendment to regulations to remove barriers to the participation of electric storage resources in the capacity, energy, and ancillary service markets operated by regional entities. Electric Storage Participation in Markets Operated by Regional Transmission Organizations and Independent System Operators, Order 841, 162 FERC 61,127 PDF (2018), order on reh’g and clar., Order 841-A, 167 FERC 61,154 PDF (2019).
      FERC Docket No. RM16-23

  16. Pacific Gas and Elec. Co. v. FERC
    No. 19-71615 (9th Cir. filed 6/26/2019)
      Commission holding that agency and bankruptcy court have concurrent jurisdiction to review and address the disposition of wholesale power contracts sought to be rejected through bankruptcy. NextEra Energy, Inc. v. PG&E, 166 FERC 61,049 PDF (2019), and Exelon Corp. v. PG&E, 166 FERC 61,053 PDF (2019), reh’g denied, 167 FERC 61,096 PDF (2019).
      FERC Docket No. EL19-35

  17. New York State Dept. of Envir. Conservation and Sierra Club v. FERC
    No. 19-1610 and 19-1618 (2d Cir. filed 5/28/2019)
      Finding that New York waived its authority under the Clean Water Act to issue or deny a water quality certification for the Northern Access pipeline project, by failing to act within one year of receiving the application for water quality certification. National Fuel Gas Supply Corp., 164 FERC 61,084 PDF (2018), reh’g denied, 167 FERC 61,007 PDF (2019).
      FERC Docket No. CP15-115

  18. Flint Riverkeeper and Chattahoochee Riverkeeper v. FERC
    No. 19-1114 (D.C. Cir. filed 5/25/2019)
      FERC order denying award of attorney’s fees, under Equal Access to Justice Act, incurred during agency proceedings (as opposed to court proceedings) on Southeast Market Pipelines Projects; remand from 10/9/18 court order (Sierra Club v. FERC, D.C. No. 16-1329) on fees. Florida Southeast Connection, LLC, et al., 167 FERC 61,068 PDF (2019).
      FERC Docket No. CP14-554

  19. Gulf South Pipeline Co., LP v. FERC
    No. 19-1074 (D.C. Cir. filed 4/2/2019)
      Certificate to construct and operate Westlake Expansion Project in Louisiana; denial of proposed rate design (proposed separate incremental recourse reservation rate and usage rate for service on the Project). Gulf South Pipeline Co., LP, 163 FERC 61,124 PDF (2018), reh’g denied, 166 FERC 61,089 PDF (2019).
      FERC Docket No. CP17-476

  20. Nebraska Public Power Dist. v. FERC
    No. 19-1553 (8th Cir. filed 3/18/2019)
      Revisions to Southwest Power Pool tariff, to incorporate Tri-State Generation and Transmission as a SPP transmission owner; allocation of costs among SPP zones. Southwest Power Pool, Inc., Op. No. 562, 163 FERC 61,109 PDF (2018), reh’g denied, Op. No. 562-A, 166 FERC 61,019 PDF (2019).
      FERC Docket No. ER16-204

  21. SFPP, L.P., et al. v. FERC and United States of America
    Nos. 19-1067, et al. (D.C. Cir. filed 3/15/2019 and later)
      Reasonableness of increased rates for shipment on SFPP’s West Line; various cost of service rate issues, including recovery of income tax allowance. SFPP, L.P., Op. No. 511, 134 FERC 61,121 PDF (2011), on reh’g & compl., Op. 511-A, 137 FERC 61,220 PDF (2011), on reh’g & compl., Op. 511-B, 150 FERC 61,096 PDF (2015), on remand & compl., Op. 511-C, 162 FERC 61,228 DOC (2018), on reh’g & compl., Op. 511-D, 166 FERC 61,142 PDF (2019).
      FERC Docket No. IS08-390

  22. Shafer & Freeman Lakes Envir. Conserv. Corp., et al. v. FERC
    No. 19-1066 (D.C. Cir. filed 3/15/2019)
      Amended license for Norway-Oakdale Hydroelectric Project on Tippecanoe River in Indiana; modified definition of “abnormal river conditions” and modified flows to protect endangered species. N. Indiana Pub. Serv. Co. LLC, 163 FERC 61,212 PDF (2018), reh’g denied, 166 FERC 61,030 PDF (2019).
      FERC Docket No. P-12514

  23. Pub. Serv. Elec. & Gas Co. and PPL Elec. Utils. Corp. v. FERC
    No. 19-1091 and 1093 (D.C. Cir. filed 2/23/2019)
      Allocation of cost responsibility for Regional Facilities, Necessary Lower Voltage Facilities, and Lower Voltage Facilities that address stability-related reliability issues in PJM. Del. Pub. Serv. Comm’n and Md. Pub. Serv. Comm’n v. PJM Interconnection and Certain Transmission Owners, 164 FERC 61,035 DOC (2018), reh’g denied, 166 FERC 61,161 PDF (2019).
      FERC Docket No. EL15-95