Virginia SCC considers Dominion environmental rider filing

The Virginia State Corporation Commission (“SCC”) is currently considering an environmental rate adjustment clause (“RAC”) filed by Dominion Energy Virginia (“Dominion”). Dominion seeks to recover approximately $302 million associated with environmental upgrades made at three of its coal-fired power stations.

$247 million of the expenditures are attributable to projects at the Chesterfield coal facility in Chester, Virginia. The new rider would result in a bill increase of $2.15 for a typical residential customer using 1,000 kilowatt-hours per month. The environmental projects include new coal waste handling facilities needed to comply with federal regulations.

Virginia law allows electric utilities to seek recovery of certain types of expenditures, including environmental compliance costs, through single-issue rate riders RACs.

On April 23, the Attorney General’s Division of Consumer Counsel and the Sierra Club filed expert witness testimony. Both the AG and the Sierra Club recommended that the SCC disallow a portion of the spending. The Attorney General, for example, suggested that some of the investments were imprudent due to the fact that many of the coal units will likely be retired in the next 5 to 10 years.

Public comments on Dominion’s application may be submitted on or before June 4. The SCC will hold an evidentiary hearing on June 11.

Please contact us should you have any questions about this pending case. The docket number for this case is PUR-2018-00195.