For the purpose of assuring an abundant supply of electric energy throughout the United States with the greatest possible economy and with regard to the proper utilization and conservation of natural resources, the Commission is empowered and directed to divide the country into regional districts for the voluntary interconnection and coordination of facilities for the generation, transmission, and sale of electric energy, and it may at any time thereafter, upon its own motion or upon application, make such modifications thereof as in its judgment will promote the public interest. Each such district shall embrace an area which, in the judgment of the Commission, can economically be served by such interconnection and coordinated electric facilities. It shall be the duty of the Commission to promote and encourage such interconnection and coordination within each such district and between such districts. Before establishing any such district and fixing or modifying the boundaries thereof the Commission shall give notice to the State commission of each State situated wholly or in part within such district, and shall afford each such State commission reasonable opportunity to present its views and recommendations, and shall receive and consider such views and recommendations.
Whenever the Commission, upon application of any State commission or of any person engaged in the transmission or sale of electric energy, and after notice to each State commission and public utility affected and after opportunity for hearing, finds such action necessary or appropriate in the public interest it may by order direct a public utility (if the Commission finds that no undue burden will be placed upon such public utility thereby) to establish physical connection of its transmission facilities with the facilities of one or more other persons engaged in the transmission or sale of electric energy, to sell energy to or exchange energy with such persons:Provided, That the Commission shall have no authority to compel the enlargement of generating facilities for such purposes, nor to compel such public utility to sell or exchange energy when to do so would impair its ability to render adequate service to its customers. The Commission may prescribe the terms and conditions of the arrangement to be made between the persons affected by any such order, including the apportionment of cost between them and the compensation or reimbursement reasonably due to any of them.
During the continuance of any emergency requiring immediate action, any person or municipality engaged in the transmission or sale of electric energy and not otherwise subject to the jurisdiction of the Commission may make such temporary connections with any public utility subject to the jurisdiction of the Commission or may construct such temporary facilities for the transmission of electric energy in interstate commerce as may be necessary or appropriate to meet such emergency, and shall not become subject to the jurisdiction of the Commission by reason of such temporary connection or temporary construction: Provided, That such temporary connection shall be discontinued or such temporary construction removed or otherwise disposed of upon the termination of such emergency: Provided further, That upon approval of the Commission permanent connections for emergency use only may be made hereunder.
After six months from August 26, 1935, no person shall transmit any electric energy from the United States to a foreign country without first having secured an order of the Commission authorizing it to do so. The Commission shall issue such order upon application unless, after opportunity for hearing, it finds that the proposed transmission would impair the sufficiency of electric supply within the United States or would impede or tend to impede the coordination in the public interest of facilities subject to the jurisdiction of the Commission. The Commission may by its order grant such application in whole or in part, with such modifications and upon such terms and conditions as the Commission may find necessary or appropriate, and may from time to time, after opportunity for hearing and for good cause shown, make such supplemental orders in the premises as it may find necessary or appropriate.
The ownership or operation of facilities for the transmission or sale at wholesale of electric energy which is (a) generated within a State and transmitted from the State across an international boundary and not thereafter transmitted into any other State, or (b) generated in a foreign country and transmitted across an international boundary into a State and not thereafter transmitted into any other State, shall not make a person a public utility subject to regulation as such under other provisions of this subchapter. The State within which any such facilities are located may regulate any such transaction insofar as such State regulation does not conflict with the exercise of the Commission’s powers under or relating to subsection (e).