Harrisburg, PA — The Retail Energy Supply Association (RESA) today formally petitioned the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) to conduct an investigation into the lack of meaningful retail electricity choice for consumers in Long Island. The investigation should have the goal of identifying measures that can be implemented to allow a meaningful and robust retail energy market and competitive choice on Long Island, RESA said.
“Although LIPA has a program intended to provide competitive choice in the provision of electric service in Long Island, in practice the program offers little in the way of choices for Long Island consumers and lags far behind the successful implementation of competitive choice for consumers in the rest of the state,” said Christopher Wentlent, RESA’s New York state chairman. “Although LIPA’s program at least on paper has been in existence for more than 15 years, in reality the program has been moribund without any material impact in the LIPA service territory.”
Currently there are very few competitive Energy Service Companies (ESCOs) authorized to operate in LIPA and there has been an insignificant level of migration of customers from LIPA to independent ESCOs compared to customer migration in the rest of the State. In contrast, retail access has grown markedly throughout the rest of New York. Currently there are approximately 214 ESCOs eligible to provide electricity in New York State and, as of June 2014, 56.1% of the total electricity demand throughout the State (outside of LIPA) has migrated to ESCOs.
The lack of electricity competition in LIPA’s service territory is even more pronounced when compared with the resounding success of natural gas choice on Long Island. As of April 2012, 70.6% of natural gas delivered by KeySpan Long Island was supplied by ESCOs. This far exceeds the statewide level of electric migration. In addition there are approximately 60 ESCOs active in Long Island’s residential gas market and 61 ESCOS active in Long Island’s commercial gas market.
“Consumers and businesses on Long Island face very high electricity costs and have been economically harmed by their inability to access competitively priced electricity,” Wentlent said. “Absent the implementation of necessary program modifications it is highly unlikely that a robust market of third-party providers offering electricity services and products to customers will ever develop in the LIPA service territory.”
Allowing choice and competition to flourish in LIPA’s service territory coupled with the New York Public Service Commission’s Retail Energy Vision (REV) initiative, and improved efficiency of LIPA’s operations and the provision of electric commodity service will provide the greatest benefit for Long Island electric consumers, RESA said in its petition. “It is imperative that constructive policies be implemented on an expeditious timetable by LIPA to make retail access a reality for Long Island electric consumers,” the petition concluded.
RESA represents competitive energy suppliers dedicated to creating and sustaining vibrantly competitive electricity and natural gas markets for the benefit of consumers. RESA’s members include: AEP Energy, Inc.; Champion Energy Services, LLC; ConEdison Solutions; Constellation NewEnergy, Inc.; Direct Energy Services, LLC; GDF SUEZ Energy Resources NA, Inc.; Homefield Energy; IDT Energy, Inc.; Integrys Energy Services, Inc.; Interstate Gas Supply, Inc. dba IGS Energy; Just Energy; Liberty Power; MC Squared Energy Services, LLC; Mint Energy, LLC; NextEra Energy Services; Noble Americas Energy Solutions LLC; NRG Energy, Inc.; PPL EnergyPlus, LLC; Stream Energy; TransCanada Power Marketing Ltd. and TriEagle Energy, L.P. For more information about RESA, please contact Tracy McCormick, Executive Director, at (717) 566-5405, or visit www.resausa.org.