Publications

    Cooper, Mark. All Pain, No Gain: Restructuring and Deregulation in the Interstate Electricity Market. Consumer Federation of America, 2002.Abstract

    Excerpt from the Executive Summary:

     

    WHEN YOU ARE HEADED IN THE WRONG DIRECTION, GOING FASTER DOES NOT HELP

    Institutions Should Fit the Facts

    Electricity is a unique industry. It is a complex, real time network that requires cooperation and coordination to deliver a vital service. Demand for electricity is inelastic. Consumers faced with high electric prices cannot simply stop using electricity or switch to something else. Supply of electricity is also inelastic. Substantial new power plants take long lead times to construct. The transmission system cannot be expanded easily. Once produced, electricity cannot be stored very efficiently. As a result, it is deeply “affected with the public interest” and requires a balance of public and private responsibilities and incentives to keep it running smoothly. Restructuring and deregulation have undermined these values in the electricity industry. State policymakers recognized these problems and slowed down or reversed the irresponsible rush toward deregulation. Unfortunately, federal policymakers are charging ahead with deregulation policies such as the Electricity Title of the Energy Bill and the Standard Market Design proposal put forth by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

    All Pain, No Gain

    States have been convinced to slow down or stop restructuring based on a mountain of evidence that restructuring and deregulation of the electricity industry offers enormous risks for consumers and virtually no rewards. Restructuring and deregulation has unleashed abuse of market power, excessive scarcity overcharges, inefficient transactions costs, and a sharp increase in the cost of capital. These cost increases swamp efficiency gains projected for deregulation.

    Bradford, Peter. “Testimony Before the United States Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works Subcommittee on Transportation, Infrastructure and Nuclear Safety - Renewal of the Price Anderson Act.” In, 2002.Abstract
    Bradford, Peter (Regulatory Assistance Project). Testimony Before the United States Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works Subcommittee on Transportation, Infrastructure and Nuclear Safety - Renewal of the Price Anderson Act. 23 January 2002. Testimony, analysis, 4 pages.