A version of this appears with my post at National Journal’s Energy Insiders blog.

Last week I made this presentation at a symposium organized by the American Public Power Association on how to reform deregulated power markets. These markets have been plagued by numerous manipulation schemes by Wall Street banks that have cost consumers hundreds of millions of dollars in higher utility bills. My presentation outlines how the non-profit organizations that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has tasked with operating these markets have the deck stacked against households. My research shows that household consumers and environmental groups hold only 3% of the voting power to make decisions about how to run the market. Meanwhile, Wall Street banks and other financial firms control 275% more votes than households. That’s why Public Citizen has called for the creation of an office of consumer advocate at FERC and to restructure the market to give consumers control over at least half of the voting shares needed to make decisions on how they should be run.

Tyson Slocum is Director of Public Citizen’s Energy Program. Follow him on Twitter @TysonSlocum


  • gary Hild

  • sue (Republican)

    Absolutely! My delivery charge for electricity is almost 2 times more than the price of the electricity. How is that? Maybe because the Governor and Atty General of CT allows the utility company to continue collecting a fee that the consumers have been paying for over 25 yrs, imposed on us so that the utility company would be able to make up for the loss that they incurred by deregulation. The company (publicly owned) just changed the name of the fee, but continues to collect it. Why is that? We need to eliminate utility companies. CT’s 2 companies hold a monopoly on delivery. Ma Bell was dismantled because of it being a monopoly. Why shouldn’t these companies also be dismantled. I bet that the space station doesn’t have power lines or a grid. Why can’t we get power without being attached to a utility company.

  • […] annual funding for a consumer-centric sustainable energy infrastructure and the establishment of an Office of Consumer Adovcate are all needed to move us away from centrally controlled fossil fuel system to the Solar Rooftop […]

  • They have the right idea here because Wall Street is where the money is and green energy won’t have a chance until consumers have a voice in decisions. BIG MONEY has been the road block to a better environment. I live in Florida, the Sunshine State, ha; very little solar here; but we now have fracking going on.

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