18 CFR 35.14 - Fuel cost and purchased economic power adjustment clauses.
(a) Fuel adjustment clauses (fuel clause) which are not in conformity with the principles set out below are not in the public interest. These regulations contemplate that the filing of proposed rate schedules, tariffs or service agreements which embody fuel clauses failing to conform to the following principles may result in suspension of those parts of such rate schedules, tariffs, or service agreements:
(1) The fuel clause shall be of the form that provides for periodic adjustments per kWh of sales equal to the difference between the fuel and purchased economic power costs per kWh of sales in the base period and in the current period:
(2) Fuel and purchased economic power costs (F) shall be the cost of:
(i) Fossil and nuclear fuel consumed in the utility's own plants, and the utility's share of fossil and nuclear fuel consumed in jointly owned or leased plants.
(ii) The actual identifiable fossil and nuclear fuel costs associated with energy purchased for reasons other than identified in paragraph (a)(2)(iii) of this section.
(iii) The total cost of the purchase of economic power, as defined in paragraph (a)(11) of this section, if the reserve capacity of the buyer is adequate independent of all other purchases where non-fuel charges are included in either Fb or Fm;
(iv) Energy charges for any purchase if the total amount of energy charges incurred for the purchase is less than the buyer's total avoided variable cost;
(v)And less the cost of fossil and nuclear fuel recovered through all inter-system sales.
(3) Sales (S) must be all kWh's sold, excluding inter-system sales. Where for any reason, billed system sales cannot be coordinated with fuel costs for the billing period, sales may be equated to the sum of: (i) Generation, (ii) purchases, (iii) exchange received, less (iv) energy associated with pumped storage operations, less (v) inter-system sales referred to in paragraph (a)(2)(iv) of this section, less (vi) total system losses.
(4) The adjustment factor developed according to this procedure shall be modified to properly allow for losses (estimated if necessary) associated only with wholesale sales for resale.
(5) The adjustment factor developed according to this procedure may be further modified to allow the recovery of gross receipts and other similar revenue based tax charges occasioned by the fuel adjustment revenues.
(6) The cost of fossil fuel shall include no items other than those listed in Account 151 of the Commission's Uniform System of Accounts for Public Utilities and Licensees. The cost of nuclear fuel shall be that as shown in Account 518, except that if Account 518 also contains any expense for fossil fuel which has already been included in the cost of fossil fuel, it shall be deducted from this account. (Paragraph C of Account 518 includes the cost of other fuels used for ancillary steam facilities.)
(7) Where the cost of fuel includes fuel from company-owned or controlled 1 sources, that fact shall be noted and described as part of any filing. Where the utility purchases fuel from a company-owned or controlled source, the price of which is subject to the jurisdiction of a regulatory body, and where the price of such fuel has been approved by that regulatory body, such costs shall be presumed, subject to rebuttal, to be reasonable and includable in the adjustment clause. If the current price, however, is in litigation and is being collected subject to refund, the utility shall so advise the Commission and shall keep a separate account of such amounts paid which are subject to refund, and shall advise the Commission of the final disposition of such matter by the regulatory body having jurisdiction. With respect to the price of fuel purchases from company-owned or controlled sources pursuant to contracts which are not subject to regulatory authority, the utility company shall file such contracts and amendments thereto with the Commission for its acceptance at the time it files its fuel clause or modification thereof. Any subsequent amendment to such contracts shall likewise be filed with the Commission as a rate schedule change and may be subject to suspension under section 205 of the Federal Power Act. Fuel charges by affiliated companies which do not appear to be reasonable may result in the suspension of the fuel adjustment clause or cause an investigation thereof to be made by the Commission on its own motion under section 206 of the Federal Power Act.
(8) All rate filings which contain a proposed new fuel clause or a change in an existing fuel clause shall conform such clauses with the regulations. Within one year of the effectiveness of this rulemaking, all public utilities with rate schedules that contain a fuel clause should conform such clauses with the regulations. Recognizing that individual public utilities may have special operating characteristics that may warrant granting temporary delays in the implementation of the regulations, the Commission may, upon showing of good cause, waive the requirements of this section of the regulations for an additional one-year period so as to permit the public utilities sufficient time to adjust to the requirements.
(9) All rate filings containing a proposed new fuel clause or change in an existing fuel clause shall include:
(i) A description of the fuel clause with detailed cost support for the base cost of fuel and purchased economic power or energy.
(ii) Full cost of service data unless the utility has had the rate approved by the Commission within a year, provided that such cost of service may not be required when an existing fuel cost adjustment clause is being modified to conform to the Commission's regulations.
(10) Whenever particular circumstances prevent the use of the standards provided for herein, or the use thereof would result in an undue burden, the Commission may, upon application under § 385.207 of this chapter and for good cause shown, permit deviation from these regulations.
(11) For the purpose of paragraph (a)(2)(iii) of this section, the following definitions apply:
(i)Economic power is power or energy purchased over a period of twelve months or less where the total cost of the purchase is less than the buyer's total avoided variable cost.
(ii)Total cost of the purchase is all charges incurred in buying economic power and having such power delivered to the buyer's system. The total cost includes, but is not limited to, capacity or reservation charges, energy charges, adders, and any transmission or wheeling charges associated with the purchase.
(iii)Total avoided variable cost is all identified and documented variable costs that would have been incurred by the buyer had a particular purchase not been made. Such costs include, but are not limited to, those associated with fuel, start-up, shut-down or any purchases that would have been made in lieu of the purchase made.
(12) For the purpose of paragraph (a)(2)(iii) of this section, the following procedures and instructions apply:
(i) A utility proposing to include purchase charges other than those for fuel or energy in fuel and purchased economic power costs (F) under paragraph (a)(2)(iii) of this section shall amend its fuel cost adjustment clause so that it is consistent with paragraphs (a)(1) and (a)(2)(iii) of this section. Such amendment shall state the system reserve capacity criteria by which the system operator decides whether a reliability purchase is required. Where the utility filing the statement is required by a State or local regulatory body (including a plant site licensing board) to file a capacity criteria statement with that body, the system reserve capacity criteria in the statement filed with the Commission shall be identical to those contained in the statement filed with the State or local regulatory body. Any utility that changes its reserve capacity criteria shall, within 45 days of such change, file an amended fuel cost and purchased economic power adjustment clause to incorporate the new criteria.
(ii) Reserve capacity shall be deemed adequate if, at the time a purchase was initiated, the buyer's system reserve capacity criteria were projected to be satisfied for the duration of the purchase without the purchase at issue.
(iii) The total cost of the purchase must be projected to be less than total avoided variable cost, at the time a purchase was initiated, before any non-fuel purchase charge may be included in Fm.
(iv) The purchasing utility shall make a credit to Fm after a purchase terminates if the total cost of the purchase exceeds the total avoided variable cost. The amount of the credit shall be the difference between the total cost of the purchase and the total avoided variable cost. This credit shall be made in the first adjustment period after the end of the purchase. If a utility fails to make the credit in the first adjustment period after the end of the purchase, it shall, when making the credit, also include in Fm interest on the amount of the credit. Interest shall be calculated at the rate required by § 35.19a(a)(2)(iii) of this chapter, and shall accrue from the date the credit should have been made under this paragraph until the date the credit is made.
(v) If a purchase is made of more capacity than is needed to satisfy the buyer's system reserve capacity criteria because the total costs of the extra capacity and associated energy are less than the buyer's total avoided variable costs for the duration of the purchase, the charges associated with the non-reliability portion of the purchase may be included in F.