On November 15, 2010, Duke Energy Ohio filed an application with the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) seeking approval of a market rate offer (MRO) to conduct a competitive bidding process for procuring its standard service offer (SSO) generation supply. A copy of the application, supporting testimony, and workpapers can be obtained from the PUCO's website at http://dis.puc.state.oh.us/CaseRecord.aspx?CaseNo=10-2586. Among other things, the application provides notice that Duke intends to make a separate filing no later than May 31, 2014, requesting the transfer of its legacy generation assets to an affiliate, and seeks approval of:
- A competitive bid process under which Duke would hold a series of descending-price, full requirements auctions to procure its retail generation supply from January 1, 2012, forward (which is very similar to the process recently approved by the PUCO as part of FirstEnergy's SSO cases);
- Duke's transition to full market prices through the blending of existing generation rates under the electric security plan (ESP) ending on December 31, 2011, and the SSO price obtained through the auctions referenced above;
- A new rider recovering the costs of procuring renewable energy credits (RECs) to meet Duke's annual renewable energy benchmarks; and
- Recovery of the costs associated with Duke's transition from the MISO to PJM regional transmission organizations, including MISO exit fees, PJM integration costs, and legacy regional transmission expansion plan (RTEP) costs.
Of note for the renewable energy industry is the fact that Duke's MRO application emphasizes that it is "better positioned, under an MRO [as opposed to the existing three-year ESP], to enter into long-term [power purchase agreements] and conduct [requests for proposals], which will serve to encourage investment in the state."