Friday, February 20, 2009

Ruling gives power line authority back to states

Original Post:
Expect to read a lot about FERC, Kelo v. City of New London, NIMBY, Green vs. green, etc. in the next six months.
From Northern Virginia Daily:

A U.S. appellate court ruling puts power over electric transmission line projects, such as the pending Potomac-Appalachian Transmission Highline, back in states' hands.

The U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals published its opinion Wednesday in a case brought by the Warrenton-based Piedmont Environmental Council regarding rules set by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in the implementation of the Energy Policy Act of 2005.

"The decision directly upholds a state's right to reject a transmission line project without fear of the federal government stepping in to overrule that State's determination," Christopher G. Miller, president of PEC, states in a press release. "In plain language, the utilities do not get a second chance if the state rejects a line based upon the merits."

The Federal Power Act language granting FERC permitting jurisdiction when a state commission has "withheld approval [of a permit application] for more than one year" does not include, as FERC held, the denial of an application, Circuit Judge M. Blane Michael wrote in the published opinion....MORE