Gas pipeliners want ability to raise prices at will

From Carbon Control News:

The natural gas pipeline industry [in the form of the Interstate Natural Gas Association of America (INGAA)] is drafting a legislative proposal for revising [Waxman-Markey] to … allow the industry to pass-along the cost of reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to its customers without an explicit approval from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC)…

While merchant power generators, utilities, and a number of other entities receive free allowances under the Waxman-Markey bill, pipeline companies do not. The INGAA spokespeson says the industry is not requesting free allowances, but instead is calling on Congress to allow the cost of purchasing allowances to be directly passed along to consumers, arguing that the allowance costs should be reflected in the delivered product.

“Unlike other industrial sources, we can’t simply raise our prices to reflect allowance” costs, the spokesperson says, noting that a pipeline company would need to go to FERC and formally request it, initiating a proceeding that can take a year or longer.

Instead, INGAA wants pipeline companies to be able to charge rates that “track” the fluctuating price of carbon allowances. Opening a new rate case would also “make the entire rate base subject to challenge and uncertainty,” something the companies want to avoid.

Here’s a novel thought: Why not oppose Waxman-Markey instead of trying to buff that legislative turd into a popsicle?

INGAA chief Don Santa: Why fight for what's right when you can surrender for what's wrong?
INGAA chief Don Santa: Why fight for what's right when you can surrender for what's wrong?

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