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United States

United States

Wind farm owners complain to FERC over BPA action

UNITED STATES: Wind farm owners in the US northwest have complained to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) about the Bonneville Power Administration's (BPA) move to limit their output.

The row stems from the BPA's decision to start limiting wind output if too much hydropower is produced from federal dams. In 2010, melting snowpacks have created a problem for the BPA when it coincided with strong winds in the northwest. As a result, the BPA avoided overloading the grid but was forced to give away surplus power to other utilities.

The complainants are Iberdrola, PacifiCorp, Horizon Wind Energy, NextEra Energy, and Invenergy.

The complaint states that the BPA is using its position in an "unduly discriminatory manner in order to protect its preferred customer base" and was trying avoid dropping prices.

Although transmission contracts allowed the BPA to cut output, the companies this did not apply because it felt the market price was too low.

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