Democrats push FERC to boost grid upgrades

By Zach Bright | 03/07/2024 06:19 AM EST

A group of lawmakers, led by Sen. Peter Welch, are calling on the agency to offer utilities incentives for grid-enhancing technologies.

Sen. Peter Welch (D-Vt.).

Sen. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) listens during a hearing on Capitol Hill last month. Mariam Zuhaib/AP

Some congressional Democrats are urging federal energy regulators to promote grid upgrades as a way to meet the country’s surging electricity demand.

In a letter shared with E&E News — and sent to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on Wednesday — the four lawmakers write that “a lack of transmission capacity is preventing new clean energy supply from coming online.”

The letter — led by Sen. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) — argues that grid-enhancing technologies, or GETs, could help squeeze more renewable power through existing power lines.


Sen. Angus King (I-Maine) and Reps. Kathy Castor (D-Fla.) and Paul Tonko (D-N.Y.) joined Welch, who chairs the Agriculture Subcommittee on Rural Development and Energy.