After a day in the bowels of FERC’s docket system as RM15-22-000, FERC rejected the BLOCK Plains & Eastern Clean Line Petition for Rulemaking.  It’s a binary thing, has to be either one or the other, so now it’s in the DOE’s hands.

FERC REJECTION_RM15-22-000  20150625-3025(30664807)

So, DOE, what cha gonna do?  You’ve been thinking about it, but it’s been 10 years since Section 1222 was passed.


And the grand finale of the Administrative Procedure Act, Section 553:

(e) Each agency shall give an interested person the right to petition for the issuance, amendment, or repeal of a rule.



When filing BLOCK Plains & Eastern Clean Line: Arkansas and Oklahoma’s Petition for Rulemaking, because it doesn’t have a docket number, it’s not an existing docket, it must be filed, and then FERC staff decides whether to accept it, the next step in deciding what to do with it.  Our Petition for Rulemaking has been accepted!  Now they will have to decide what they’ll do with it!

Here’s the FERC Notice:

Acceptance for Filing ——————— The FERC Office of the Secretary has accepted the following electronic submission for filing (Acceptance for filing does not constitute approval of any application or self-certifying notice):

Accession No.: 201506165371

Docket(s) No.: RM15-22-000

Filed By: BLOCK Plains & Eastern Clean Line: Arkansas and Oklahoma -Signed By: Carol Overland F

Filing Type: Utility Accounting Request(??)

Filing Desc: Petition for Rulemaking of Regulations for Filing Applications and Review of Transmission Line Projects under Section 1222 of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 of BLOCK Plains & Eastern Clean Line under RM15-22.

Submission Date/Time: 6/16/2015 2:25:40 PM

Filed Date: 6/16/2015 2:25:40 PM

Your submission is now part of the record for the above Docket(s) and available in FERC’s eLibrary system at: http://elibrary.ferc.gov/idmws/file_list.asp?accession_num=20150616-5371

If you would like to receive e-mail notification when additional documents are added to the above docket(s), you can eSubscribe by docket at: https://ferconline.ferc.gov/eSubscription.aspx

Here are the filings (each was advised of the other Petition for Rulemaking so everyone knows):

FERC_Petition for Rulemaking_Attachments_FINAL

DOE_Petition for Rulemaking_Attachments_FINAL

Note we also filed a Petition for Rulemaking with the DOE’s Office of General Counsel.  Let them argue between themselves and figure out just who is going to do it and when and get it MOVING FORWARD!  Rulemaking is long overdue, and FYI, DOE, you have no business making any decision, doing any review, without rules.


Remember the Excelsior Energy Mesaba Project (see Legalectric posts and Citizens Against the Mesaba Project’s “Camp Site”), the boondoggle coal gasification plant that almost was, the project that got every legislative perk possible, got financing and grants based on wishful thinking and that “something else” that we just can’t identify (without which, who would think this was a good idea?  That plant that was to be built, according to the special legislation for this project, on a site WITH INFRASTRUCTURE?  This site… dig the infrastructure!


Anyway, it wasn’t built here.  But a similar plant WAS built in Indiana, the Edwardsport plant owned by Duke Energy.  As with the Mesaba Project it was proposed at a reasonable price, legislators were first told $700 million, and then it went upwards of $2.11 billion.  For Edwardsport, same story, and that price kept going up, up, up, and in Indiana, it was so extreme that costs recoverable from ratepayers were capped by the Indiana Public Utility Commission at $2.9 BILLION.  It was allowed to be built, and it started operating, sort of…  Average output has been 41%, when an 80+% capacity factor was promised.  Repairs?  That’s putting it mildly.  Now they’re going to try to get cost recovery for that.

Problems pile up at Edwardsport 06-14-2015

Now, let’s not all forget all the money given by the Joyce Foundation to support this nonsense.


Here’s a specific and eloquent comment from Michael Mullet, very involved in opposition to the Edwardsport fiasco:

    You raise what is definitely the “bottom line” question for Edwardsport given the huge subsidy which almost 800,000 Indiana ratepayers have been paying and are continuing to pay to Duke Energy every month for Edwardsport generation.
    Based on what DEI customers had paid to the Company for Edwardsport and the plant’s net generation through March 2014, the cumulative cost since Edwardsport costs (including CWIP charges) began appearing in customer rates in 2009 was approximately 57 cents per kwh and the current cost for only the twelve month period under review in pending Cause No. 43114-IGCC-12&13 was approximately 33 cents per kwh.  See Direct Testimony of Ralph C. Smith, Joint Intervenors Exhibit A, IURC Causes Nos. 43114-IGCC-12&13, filed December 15, 2014, pp. 48-54.
    Complaints by Duke Energy and other Indiana IOUs that the costs of energy efficiency under Energizing Indiana were “excessive'” resulted in the Indiana General Assembly abruptly terminating that program in 2014 even though an impartial third party concluded that its costs were approximately 4 cents per kwh of electricity saved.    Complaints by Duke Energy and other Indiana IOUs that the costs of customer credits for rooftop solar power in the range of 9 to 13 cents per kwh represent an unfair and unaffordable subsidy to approximately 500 net metering customers statewide also resulted in serious legislative consideration of a bill (thankfully not resulting in any enacted legislation to date) to terminate that program as well.
    In this context of sustainable resources being “too costly” at a level of 4 to 13 cents per kwh, it would seem long overdue for Indiana’s regulators (or, alternatively, its legislators and its Governor) either to impose a reasonable “operating cost cap” on Edwardsport charges to customers or, failing that, to shut the plant down as grossly uneconomic and a monumental waste of scarce ratepayer resources in the face of Edwardsport costs for millions of mwh of coal gas generation with no carbon capture let alone sequestration which are multiple orders of magnitude greater than those for end-use efficiency under Energizing Indiana  or rooftop solar under Net Metering.
    This incredible “double standard” to subsidize Indiana’s favorite “crony capitalists” at Duke Energy and Peabody Coal (whose Bear Run mine in southwest Indiana supplies 100% of Ewardsport’s coal) in order to permit them to spew millions of tons of unregulated CO2 annually into the global atmosphere should end ASAP.
                                                                                                        Michael A. Mullet


WOW!  Hot off the press, U.S. Senators John Boozman and Tom Cotton from Arkansas, Senator Lamar Alexander from Tennessee, and  U.S. Representatives Rick Crawford, French Hill, Steve Womack, and Bruce Westerman have all signed on to a letter to Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz to extend the comment period on the Plains & Eastern Clean Line Transmission Project.

Lawmakers Reques

t for Extension of Time for Comments

And here’s their press release:

Federal Lawmakers Request More Time for Comment Period on Plains & Eastern Clean Line Transmission Project

In their press release, they make it easy for all of you to send your request too… so just do it!

Written comments should be addressed as follows: U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability (OE-20), 1222 Program, 1000 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585. Electronic comments can be emailed to plainsandeastern@hq.doe.gov. [and also send to the DOE assigned staff person, Angela.Colamaria@hq.doe.gov] The Department will make comments available as they are received. Additional information from the Department is available at http://energy.gov/oe/downloads/plains-eastern-clean-line-transmission-line-part-2-application

Please take a few minutes and send them a hearty THANK YOU!!!

Senator Boozman (AR) Contact Page

Senator Cotton (AR) Contact Page

Senator Alexander (TN) Contact Page

Rep. Rick Crawford

Rep. French Hill

Rep. Steve Womack

Rep. Bruce Westerman

And in the Arkansas News:


QUICK — take a few seconds and send a missive to BOTH plainsandeastern@hq.doe.gov AND Angela.Colamaria@hq.doe.gov and ask for 1) an extension of time to file comments, at least to September 11, 2015; and 2) public hearings across the affected area, as they did for the DEIS.


Hot off the press, here are the BLOCK Plains & Eastern Clean Line: Arkansas and Oklahoma Initial Filings to the DOE’s Office of Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability in the Plains & Eastern Clean Line docket:



Notice of Appearance





BLOCK_Petition for Delay

And to add a little frosting on the cake:

CEII_Cover & Agreement

Meanwhile, Clean Line is putting its efforts into ASTROTURF!!!  You’d think they’d have a clue how that goes over.

Arkansans for Jobs and Low-Cost Energy

And here’s the Citizens First Congress Champions for Change luncheon, where BLOCK Plains & Eastern Clean Line: Arkansas and Oklahoma’s Alison Milsaps spoke to the crowd: