How can regulation of energy utilities be improved?
Dr. Mark Jamison's workshop at Gartner Symposium ITXPO 2013
October 8, 2013
Orlando, Florida, USA
How can regulation of energy utilities be improved? That was the question for a PURC workshop at Gartner Symposium ITXPO 2013 in Orlando, Florida, on October 8, 2013. Utility executives from North and South America discussed problems of political interference, lack of understanding of the utility business, lack of accountability, and economic incentives that encourage inefficiency. PURC director Mark Jamison explained that these are the very problems that regulatory commissions were supposed to in some sense solve when they were developed about 100 years ago in the United States. The sense in the workshop was that while having expert and independent utility regulatory agencies is important, the traditional design of the regulatory system and the growing impact of environmental regulators, who do not bear the consequences of their decisions, were unsustainable for today’s energy business. Dr. Jamison talked with the group about the need to understand the regulatory system from the inside and about strategies for developing new paradigms for regulation.