Today, the group of transmission systems developing the SeTrans RTO filed a status report with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. This filing is the latest step in a process that began in June, when owners of transmission systems across Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi and South Carolina signed a memorandum of understanding to form a Regional Transmission Organization (RTO) for the Southeast.
Since last June, City of Tallahassee (FL), Dalton (GA) Utilities, Georgia Transmission Corporation, JEA -- Jacksonville (FL), the Municipal Electric Authority of Georgia; Santee Cooper (SC), South Mississippi Electric Power Association and Southern Company have been working on the formation of a regional transmission organization for the Southeastern United States. The RTO, named SeTrans Grid Company, was recently expanded to include the Entergy Companies as participating transmission owners. Once it becomes operational, SeTrans would be one of the nations largest RTOs, serving an area with more than 73,000 Megawatts of generation, and operating some 53,000 miles of transmission with an investment in assets in excess of $9 billion.
To enable interested parties to have input into formation of the RTO, SeTrans will hold a "Stakeholder Meeting" January 14 and 15, 2002, at the Omni Hotel in Atlanta, Georgia to establish a stakeholder advisory committee. Details on the meeting will be posted on the SeTrans web site (www.setransgrid.com).
The structure chosen by the participating transmission owners will involve the hiring of a proven independent operator for the transmission system. The agreements between the operator and transmission owners will provide incentives to the operator to maintain or enhance reliability, minimize the cost of the operation of the system and enhance the efficient use of the system. A detailed description of the proposed governance structure of SeTrans, the proposed role of stakeholders in the selection of the independent third party operator, and the ongoing role of the Stakeholder Advisory Committee, are all described in todays filing.
With a great deal of effort and cooperation on the part of all parties to the SeTrans negotiations, we have made excellent progress toward the development of an RTO that would include substantial public power participation, said Gary Tipps, Manager of Power Supply for South Mississippi Electric Power Association, one of the participants of SeTrans. Were pleased that so many, diverse participants are involved in the SeTrans group. We look forward to working together as a team as we continue the process of forming a successful RTO.
Throughout the process of forming SeTrans, the focus of SeTrans participants has been to meet the objectives of state and federal regulators, minimize the costs imposed on our customers, maintain or enhance the high degree of reliability to customers, and to protect the value of our transmission assets, said Ed Holland, Executive Vice President of Southern Company, another SeTrans participant. We look forward to continuing to work with state commissions and other stakeholders in the development of an RTO that satisfies FERC Order 2000, which encourages the formation of RTOs, and the objectives of SeTrans participants. We believe that the SeTrans model is the best platform to achieve our mutual goals.
City of Tallahassee maintains more than 2,200 miles of transmission and distribution lines, serving some 98,000 homes and businesses in the Tallahassee, Fla., area, including approximately $51 million in transmission assets and 185 miles of transmission lines.
Dalton Utilities is a full-service utility providing electric, water, wastewater, natural gas and telecommunications services to the city of Dalton, Ga., and portions of Whitfield, Murray, Gordon, Floyd and Catoosa counties in Georgia, including approximately $52 million in transmission assets and 352 miles of transmission lines.
Entergy Corporation (NYSE: ETR) is a global energy company with more than 23,000 megawatts of electric generating capacity in four states in the Southeast, approximately $3 billion in transmission investment and 15,000 miles of transmission lines, serving 2.6 million customers. It is one of the largest producers of electricity in the United States.
Georgia Transmission Corporation is a not-for-profit cooperative established for the sole purpose of providing transmission services to its members. GTC is owned by 39 Electric Membership Corporations in Georgia. GTC owns approximately $925 million in assets, including 2,500 miles of transmission lines and 500 substations across the state and serves over 1.4 million end-use customers.
JEA, formerly known as Jacksonville Electric Authority, is a municipally owned electric supplier serving 360,000 customers in a four-county area of northeast Florida, including approximately $253 million in transmission assets and 714 miles of transmission lines.
Municipal Electric Authority of Georgia (MEAG Power) is a joint-action state authority providing wholesale electric generation and transmission to 48 city or county owned electric systems in Georgia. MEAG Power is one of the largest public power entities in the United States, including approximately $214 million in transmission assets and 1,224 miles of transmission lines.
Santee Cooper is South Carolina`s state-owned electric and water utility. The utility is the direct and indirect source of power for 1.6 million South Carolinians and maintains 4,480 miles of transmission lines and $738 million of transmission assets. Based on generation and energy sales, Santee Cooper is the nation`s fourth largest publicly owned electric utility among state, municipal and district systems.
South Mississippi Electric Power Association is a non-profit wholesale electric power cooperative serving the power requirements of the 350,000 retail consumers of its 11-member distribution cooperatives in the state of Mississippi, including approximately $139 million in transmission assets and 1,500 miles of transmission lines.
Southern Company (NYSE: SO) is a super-regional energy company with more than 35,000 megawatts of electric generating capacity in the Southeast, approximately $4 billion in transmission investment and 26,000 miles of transmission lines, serving 4 million customers. It is one of the largest producers of electricity in the United States.