State proceedings to evaluate gas pipeline expansion for electric supply
In similar proceedings, Brattle was retained by the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office (AGO) and the Maine Office of Public Advocate regarding the appropriateness of developing new natural gas capacity to the New England area in order to support electric reliability and the economy. The proceedings considered how any new capacity should be sponsored or compensated by the electric distribution companies (EDCs). We analyzed the drivers of natural gas price spikes in New England and identified the scope of potential solutions, along with developing a framework for determining whether such procurements would be in the public interest versus other alternatives. We recommended the use of total resource cost (TRC) as the primary economic evaluation metric instead of metrics that are based on price suppression. We also suggested implementation approaches that included a competitive and open procurement process, especially in light of the potential for conflicts of interest due to EDC participation in some proposed pipeline projects.