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Moving Beyond Paralysis: How States and Regions Are Creating Innovative Transmission Projects

October 13, 2009

This report (PDF 1.1 MB) Download Adobe Reader will profile certain state and regional transmission policy initiatives aimed at promoting transmission development, mainly to access renewable resources — including renewable energy zones, location-constrained tariffs, open seasons, and balanced portfolio plans. In particular, this article will focus on transmission initiatives intended to plan and build transmission in advance of new generation, instead of waiting for enough planned new generation to justify the development of a new transmission line of sufficient capability. These initiatives, at various stages of development, are located in the states of Texas, Colorado, and California, and the regions covered by the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) and the Southwest Power Pool (SPP). These activities could likely result in the building of much-needed transmission lines. While the success of these new proactive programs has yet to be fully demonstrated, these state and regional plans could serve as models to be considered and adopted by other states and regions that are encountering difficulty developing new transmission lines.

—Julie Jones