Nuclear, Policy & Regulation

Perry Grants More Time for FERC to Subsidize Coal and Nuclear

By Editors of Power Engineering

Energy Secretary Rick Perry granted the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission more time to craft new rules that would subsidize and otherwise support coal and nuclear plants, though he urged the commission to act quickly.

The new deadline has moved from December 10 to January 10, E&E News reported. Perry delivered the news in a letter that stressed “urgent action is required” to change the rules.

“If the Commission fails to adopt the Proposal within the original deadline for the reasons stated in the Extension Request, the security of our nation’s electric grid will continue to be at risk,” Perry wrote.

Perry also indicated he would examine all his legal options for taking “remedial action as necessary to ensure the security of the nation’s electric grid.”

The delay was requested by Kevin McIntyre, the new chairman of FERC, just hours after taking the job. McIntyre said the extension was due to over 1,500 submissions on the matter, as well as two new commissioners who were just sworn in and needed to fully consider the request.

Perry requested subsidies for coal and nuclear plants in September, arguing that the stockpiles of fuel at those plants make them more reliable during natural disasters or other emergencies.

McIntyre’s predecessor, Neil Chatterjee, said he would comply with the request.