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The US will implement long-term planning in regional transmission facilities

The US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has approved an electric transmission policy update requiring long-term planning for regional transmission operators to determine future power needs. The grid rule adopts specific requirements for transmission providers to conduct long-term planning for regional transmission facilities and determine how to pay for them.

According to the rule, transmission operators will need to conduct and periodically update their long-term transmission planning over a 20-year time horizon to anticipate future needs. It also provides for cost-effective expansion of transmission that is being replaced, when needed, known as “right-sizing” transmission facilities. The policy seeks to address the comments and concerns of hundreds of stakeholders, collected over the last three years and representing all sectors of the electric power industry, advocacy groups and state and other government entities.

In 2021, the US administration unveiled a US$2,000bn infrastructure plan over ten years. The plan includes, among other things, tax incentives that should contribute to upgrading the country’s power transmission system, with a target of 20 GW of additional high-voltage capacity until 2030.

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