April 26, 2018

History of (De) Regulations

The United States government influences the utility industry by passing legislation in Congress and by issuing orders from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). Here is a listing of important federal legislation and and year the legislation was passed.

1935 – Public Utility Holding Company Act (PUHCA)
Restricts ownership of an electric business by a non-utility company.

1978 – Natural Gas Policy Act
First step toward deregulation of natural gas prices.

1978 – Public Utility Regulatory Act
Beginning of competition for generation of electricity. Requires utilities to provide open access to transmission lines for use by independent power generators.

1985 – Open Gas Access (FERC Orders 436 through 636)
Direct 1992 access, disaggregation of integrated natural gas industry, and unbundling of products at the wholesale level.

1989 – Wellhead Decontrol Act
By 1993, had effected the end of all price controls on first sales of gas.

1992 – Energy Policy Act
Set the stage for competition in wholesale electricity generation.

1996 – Electricity Open Access (FERC Orders 888 and 889)
Order 888 opened up wholesale power sales to competition; Order 889 addressed transmission system fairness to all competitors as pertains to wholesale power transactions and created the OASIS system (see definition) in use today.