IPPNY Champions the Benefits of Competition As New York's Wholesale Electricity Markets Turn 15

Energy Trade Association Issues 2015 Legislative Agenda

Albany, N.Y. 2/11/15 – Independent Power Producers of New York, Inc. (IPPNY) is ready to champion the successes of competitive wholesale electricity markets during the 2015 Legislative Session. With the ongoing Reforming the Energy Vision proceeding and Governor Cuomo’s 2015 Opportunity Agenda containing provisions that would affect the power sector, IPPNY’s focus will be to highlight the tremendous benefits competitive wholesale electricity markets have brought to New York, as well as to support policies that further the trade association’s mission of promoting fair, fully competitive electricity markets in New York State.

“Since wholesale electricity markets were restructured 15 years ago, New York has experienced sustained outstanding performance from these competitive markets in terms of reliability of power supply, lower costs to consumers, and greater emissions reductions,” said IPPNY President & CEO Gavin J. Donohue. “New York markets produce the highest level of electric generator availability and efficiency while selling at near record-low wholesale electricity prices. In fact, ratepayers experienced average wholesale prices in 2013 that, when adjusted for inflation, were roughly 34% lower than they were in 2000, a testament to the success of competitive markets at the wholesale level. As the State works to reimagine the electric grid and incorporate distributed energy resources, IPPNY will continue to work with Governor Cuomo and the Legislature to ensure that New York maintains its reliable electric system while keeping costs down and recognizing the significant benefits the competitive wholesale market structure has delivered over these last 15 years.”

Correspondingly, IPPNY’s 2015 legislative priorities include: maintaining the benefits of the competitive wholesale electricity market; promoting fair competition and tax treatment among all types of energy resources; encouraging regulatory certainty; and supporting the development of reliable and diverse supplies of energy.

One of the primary benefits of competitive wholesale markets is that, by restricting utility and public power authority ownership of generation facilities and distributed energy resources, investment risks continue to shift from captive ratepayers to private investors – meaning that private developers look to the market to cover costs and produce revenue rather than directly from ratepayers. This design benefits ratepayers because the market chooses the least cost options to meet the state’s electric needs at any given time, promoting generator efficiency and downward pressure on prices.

A further result of this competitive market approach has been the dramatic environmental improvements New York has achieved. Thanks to greater power plant efficiency and emissions reduction solutions, independent power producers have cut carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by 48.9 percent below 1990 levels and 41.6 percent compared to 2005 levels. That’s the most of any sector in New York's economy and, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, makes New York the lowest per-capita energy-related CO2 emitter of any state in the nation!

Over the last 15 years, the wholesale market structure has benefited New Yorkers as intended, attracting crucial energy investments, spurring emissions reductions, maintaining reliability, and creating an environment that rewards power producers who compete to be the most efficient and cost-effective solutions to the state’s energy needs. In 2015, IPPNY will look to sustain this success and help to achieve New York’s energy and environmental goals by advocating for the continuance of this winning formula.

The Independent Power Producers of New York, Inc. (IPPNY) is an Albany-based trade association representing the competitive power supply industry in New York State. IPPNY Members generate over 75 percent of New York's electricity using a wide variety of generating technologies and fuels including hydro, nuclear, wind, coal, oil, natural gas and biomass. They have invested over $10 billion in their facilities and employ over 10,000 people. Annually, they pay over $600 million in taxes and invest more than $55 million in their communities.

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