Over the past year or so, we’ve been tracking the unsteady progress of utility grid modernization proposals, and the steadier march of energy regulatory reforms, taking place on a state-by-state basis across the country.
This week, we saw these two industry trends collide in Virginia, where dominant utility Dominion Energy, which has already seen several setbacks from state regulators in the past six months, is now facing a broad-based political coalition that wants to deregulate the state’s energy structure, and relegate Dominion to a “wires-only” transmission and distribution provider.
That’s the goal of the Virginia Energy Reform Coalition, an unusual combination of right- and left-leaning organizations led by former Republican state Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli.
The group launched this week with a nine-point policy program that would amount to converting Virginia’s vertically integrated utility regulatory framework into a Texas-like competitive market.
Here's what's at play.