That's what happens in Allegheny Energy's Securities and Exchange Commission Form 10-K for 2009. In this filing, they must reveal any risk factors to their investors. Here are some quotes:
"The TrAIL Project and the PATH Project are subject to permitting and state regulatory approvals, and the failure to obtain any of these permits or approvals could have an adverse effect on Allegheny’s business.
The construction of both the TrAIL Project and the PATH Project are subject to the prior approval of various regulatory bodies. TrAIL Company has obtained the state siting approvals (subject to a pending appeal in Pennsylvania) necessary to construct TrAIL and is continuing to pursue necessary permits. Allegheny met with substantial political opposition, as well as opposition from environmental, community and other groups, in obtaining siting approval for TrAIL and is likely to encounter similar opposition with regard to the PATH Project. There can be no assurance that Allegheny will be able to obtain the regulatory approvals required in connection with these projects, particularly the siting approvals required to construct PATH, on a timely basis or at all. The inability to obtain any required state approval or other regulatory approval as a result of such opposition or otherwise, may have an adverse effect on Allegheny’s business, results of operations, cash flows and financial condition."
Remember that story about how PATH is "needed" due to increased demand? Here's Allegheny's revelation on Risks Relating to Allegheny's Operations:
"Decreasing demand for electric power, as well as for certain commodities underlying the production of electric power and the related decline in market prices for power are adversely affecting Allegheny’s business.
During 2009, customer demand for electric power in Allegheny’s region fell significantly as a result of the ongoing economic recession and mild summer weather, among other factors. Overall demand for some of the commodities that underlie the production of electricity, and as a result the prevailing prices for those commodities, have also declined. Although power prices may be influenced by many factors, weakening demand for electricity, together with significantly lower commodity prices, have contributed to sharp declines in market prices for power over the past 12 to 15 months. Partly as a consequence of these declines, AE Supply generated significantly less power in 2009 than in 2008.
Allegheny can make no assurances regarding the impact of any economic recovery on demand and market prices for power. Improvements in demand and market prices for power, if any, may lag any future improvements in overall economic conditions, and it is also possible that the current economic climate could result in long-term reduction of demand for power in our region, particularly among large industrial consumers. It is also possible that changes in customer behavior, as a result of conservation programs such as EmPOWER Maryland and Pennsylvania’s Act 129 or otherwise, could result in long-term reductions in demand for power."
The paradox of this next revealed risk just gives me the giggles. Remember, laughter is good for your health!
"Changes in weather patterns as a result of global warming could have an adverse effect on Allegheny’s business. Allegheny also could be impacted to the extent that global warming trends affect established weather patterns or exacerbate extreme weather or weather fluctuations. Although Allegheny’s physical assets are located in a region in which they are unlikely to experience detrimental physical damage from the rising sea levels that have been modeled in various analyses that attempt to predict the effects of global warming, other weather-related effects that could be associated with global warming, such as an increase in the frequency and/or severity of storms or other significant climate changes within or outside of Allegheny’s service territory, may have an adverse impact on Allegheny’s business, results of operations, cash flow and financial condition."
The PATH companies continue to taint their parent companies' reputations with increasingly unsavory business practices intended to win approvals for their project by any means, fair or foul. No matter how much lipstick they put on this pig, it's still a pig, and therefore:
"Energy companies are subject to adverse publicity, which may make Allegheny vulnerable to negative regulatory and litigation outcomes.
The energy sector has been the subject of negative publicity, most recently in the context of the dialogue regarding climate change. Allegheny has come under some scrutiny in this regard, and also has faced public opposition in connection with its transmission expansion initiatives, as well as certain of its demand-side conservation efforts and ordinary utility rate increases. Negative publicity of this nature may make legislators, regulators and courts less likely to take a favorable view of energy companies in general and/or Allegheny, specifically, which could cause them to make decisions or take actions that are adverse to Allegheny."
Not so sure of themselves, are they? Fight on, people!