Brief of Amicus Curiae by Open Markets in Support of Plaintiffs-Appellants in PNE Energy Supply LLC v. Eversource Energy and Avangrid Inc.
October 25, 2019
The Open Markets Institute filed an amicus brief in support of PNE Energy Supply in its lawsuit against Eversource Energy and Avangrid, Inc. on October 25, 2019.
In its suit, PNE Energy accuses Eversource Energy and Avangrid of creating an artificial shortage of natural gas (which is used to generate electricity) and thereby triggering a dramatic increase in the price of electricity for purchasers of power of New England.
Historically, federal and state regulators treated the gas and electricity industries as monopolistic and subjected these corporations to public utility regulation. In this case, the gas and electricity prices at issue were set in markets, not established by regulators. Nonetheless, the district court expanded the “filed rate doctrine” – which safeguards regulator-approved-rates – to protect Eversource Energy and Avangrid’s market misconduct from private antitrust lawsuits. By doing so, the court granted a, “de facto license for sellers of gas and electricity to use their market power to transfer millions or even billions of dollars from the public into their own coffers.”