WIRES Newsletter - Q2 2020
Message from the Executive Director
As we pass the mid-year mark for 2020, the signs are increasingly clear that the need for significantly more investment in transmission infrastructure is on the rise. That message was driven home earlier this year in a WIRES-sponsored report by ScottMadden analyzing the nation’s growing transmission needs prompted by resilience challenges and renewables integration to meet ambitious clean energy goals. Since then, WIRES has actively participated in policy forums and filed comments in FERC proceedings involving ROE, transmission incentives, and decisions relating to transmission asset management, and in an International Trade Commission investigation, to provide a strong voice advocating for policies that promote investment in needed transmission. The upcoming WIRES Summer Meeting provides yet a further opportunity for key federal and state decision makers and industry leaders to explore ways to advance these goals. But time is of the essence, and clear, consistent, and impactful action at the federal and state level will be needed to promote and incentivize transmission investment needed to meet the future energy needs of customers and the nation.
 — Larry Gasteiger
FERC Developments
Q2 has been busy with a number of comments and motions submitted to FERC on return on equity and transmission incentives.

For your information, here are links to download PDFs of the filings:
Also please note that the 7/1/20 incentives filing includes a whitepaper prepared by London Economics International. We are including a separate link to both the report and a one-page fact sheet.
WIRES Summer Meeting header
Summer Member Meeting
WIRES has organized a compelling line up of speakers for our virtual Summer Member Meeting. While we are disappointed to miss connecting in person, we hope the GoToMeeting webinar format will allow broader participation. The Board and FSM meetings are scheduled for the afternoon of July 29th. The morning of July 30th will be devoted to keynotes from FERC Chairman Neil Chatterjee and NERC president and CEO, James Robb. Additionally we will have two robust panel discussions on COVID-19's impact on the transmission industry and on transmission incentives. Review the complete agenda and speaker bios by downloading the program. If you have not already RSVPed, please register now.
New Member Profile
This quarter WIRES welcomed FirstEnergy as a new full supporting member.

FirstEnergy has been focused on a major initiative to upgrade and modernize its transmission system. Branded “Energizing the Future” the initiative involves upgrading many of FirstEnergy’s existing transmission facilities with advanced equipment and technologies that will reinforce the power grid and help prevent or reduce the duration of customer outages. Since 2014, FirstEnergy has upgraded or replaced existing power lines, incorporated new, smart technology into the grid, and upgraded dozens of substations with new equipment and enhanced security features. These upgrades produced reliability improvements across its entire transmission system. FirstEnergy will continue these investments through 2023, with planned spending of $1.2 to $1.45 billion annually.
WIRES in the News
WIRES has been actively engaging with trade, policy and national business press, briefing them on transmission industry issues and offering commentary on FERC and other policy developments. Additionally, WIRES and Larry also participated in the Macro Grid Initiative (MGI) announcement led by ACEG and ACORE. Our ScottMadden report was referenced numerous times in the MGI coverage. A sampling of recent articles that include commentary from Larry and/or highlight our report is below.

Recent WIRES In the News coverage:

6/18/20 - E&E News - FERC Plans Forum on Offshore Wind

Sneak Peek at New WIRES Website
At the beginning of August we will debut our new WIRES website. The URL will remain the same, www.wiresgroup.com. Here’s a sneak peek at the home page.
WIRES website sneak peek
WIRES is an international, non-profit trade association of investor-, publicly-, and cooperatively owned transmission providers, transmission customers, regional grid managers, and equipment and service companies. WIRES promotes investment in electric transmission and progressive state and federal policies that advance energy markets, economic efficiency, and consumer and environmental benefits through development of electric power infrastructure. For more information, visit www.wiresgroup.com.