The union states that "...the retirements may also have a detrimental effect on energy, capacity and ancillary prices in the PJM Regional Transmission Organization (PJM)."
The union further reasons:
"We are concerned that prematurely retiring such a large amount of apparently economic generating
capacity could lead to an increase in energy, capacity and ancillary service prices, to the benefit of FE's remaining facilities."
"This concern is heightened by FE's failure to explain adequately the bases for its plans. With nearly two years remaining before the MATS closure deadline, FE's decision not to invest in MATS compliance fails to justify its evident rush to deactivate the plants. The decision is
likewise not explainable as the consequence of "continued low market price(s] for electricity." While the 2013 PJM capacity auction resulted in relatively lower prices (and a decline in the amount of coal-fired generation clearing the auction), those results apply to the period 2016-2017, which is after the April 2015 MATS compliance deadline. FE has not shown that
either plant is losing money, nor are we aware of any efforts to sell the plants. In these circumstances, a premature closing of the units may constitute a form of physical withholding and an improper effort to affect market prices."
In addition to being concerned about its own members, the union says, "...consumers deserve assurance that FE's action will not harm reliability or artificially inflate energy and capacity prices in PJM."
They wrap up:
"We urge the Commission to investigate FE's actions. In particular, the Commission should investigate FE's internally-stated reasons for the proposed closure date and any related business studies and cost-benefit analyses. Such an investigation would be in the public interest, consistent with the Commission's anti-market manipulation and rate regulatory authority, and in
the interest of the communities affected by FE's action."
Why, sure, I'd love to see those studies and analyses, too. How about it FE, want to share?
Chances of FERC acting on this? Slim to none. FE's plant closure market manipulation must be perfectly legal because those minding the store continue to allow it to happen unfettered. Of course it's going to artificially inflate energy and capacity prices that consumers must pay and create profits for the flailing FirstEnegy financials. That's what this game is all about!
Even rats know when to abandon a sinking ship. These guys should start looking for other jobs. I'd like to see Tony the Trickster keep just one plant running with the help of his million dollar henchmen and a couple of cute cocktail waitresses. Got candles?