Under pressure: Utilities turn to coal, FERC eyes interconnection overhaul

Consulting firm ScottMadden’s latest energy industry update, fittingly titled “Under Pressure,” outlines how rising post-pandemic energy demand, ambitious decarbonization targets, soaring commodity prices, and geopolitical tensions have all combined to put immense pressure on the global energy industry.

As a result, the US power sector is seeing its resolve to hold to more aggressive climate goals challenged. With the run-up in natural gas prices, coal generation has risen; wind and solar projects are being held up by the long and growing backlog of projects sitting in interconnection queues across the country; and some wonder if the clean energy transition will need to hit the brakes, at least temporarily, to ensure that utility customers can continue to afford their electricity bills.

S&P Global editor Ellie Potter spoke with ScottMadden partner Cristin Lyons, who leads the firm’s energy practice, about market dynamics and challenges facing the power sector as it seeks to meet the administration’s goal to decarbonize by 2035, as well as some recent actions taken by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission that could help bring renewable projects online more quickly.

Stick around after the interview for Starr Spencer with the Market Minute, a look at near-term oil market drivers.

This podcast was produced by Jasmin Melvin in Washington and Jennifer Pedrick in Houston.

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