FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 11, 2024
December Electricity Price Inflation Jumps 1.3%, Outpacing CPI at Just .3% – FERC Must Act
WASHINGTON – Today’s inflation data released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics showed the monthly increase for electricity in December was 1.3% as compared to just .3% for the CPI and -.1% for the CPI/energy commodities. Across all of 2023, the electricity price index increased 3.3% as compared to -2.0% for the energy commodities basket. Additionally, the full year inflation data showed that electricity prices exceeded other energy commodities such as fuel oil and gasoline. FERC can take action to fight these runaway prices, but it is currently poised to back incumbent monopoly utilities and entrench electricity inflation.
In a statement, Paul Cicio, Chair of the Electricity Transmission Competition Coalition, said: “Without competition, monopoly incumbent electric utilities do not have an incentive to reduce costs when building new transmission projects. They receive a ROE on every dollar spent for periods of 40 years or more. And all the costs are paid for by us, the consumer. Because FERC is not enforcing competition, less than 10 percent of all transmission projects are competitively bid. Electricity price inflation is solely caused by non-competitive escalating transmission costs that are rolled into our utility bills.”
Competitively bid electricity transmission projects have been shown to reduce costs to consumers by up to 40 percent according to The Brattle Group – assuming a conservative estimate, if only 33% of new transmission projects were competitively bid and there is an average cost savings of 40%, ratepayers could save an estimated $277 billion. If all new transmission projects were competitively bid at an average cost savings of 40%, ratepayers could save an estimated $840 billion by 2050. Read more about the benefits of transmission competition in ETCC’s comprehensive report.
About the Electricity Transmission Competition Coalition
The Electricity Transmission Competition Coalition (ETCC) is a broad-based, nation-wide coalition committed to increasing competition in America’s electricity transmission infrastructure. We advocate for common-sense policies and solutions that result in competitively priced transmission projects, which reduce energy costs for all ratepayers – from large manufacturers to residential consumers. The ETCC represents a diverse group of 92 companies and organizations from all 50 states, including manufacturing groups, retail electric consumers, state consumer advocates, public power representatives, think tanks, and non-incumbent transmission developers.
For more information, visit: www.electricitytransmissioncompetitioncoalition.org.