FERC Affirms Qualifying Facilities Under PURPA are Exempt from Section 203(a)(1) of the FPA

November 19, 2015

By order issued today, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC or Commission) affirmed that qualifying facilities (QFs) under the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act of 1978, as amended (PURPA), including QFs with market-based rate tariffs on file, are exempt from regulation under section 203(a)(1) of the Federal Power Act (FPA).  The Commission issued its order in response to a petition for declaratory order filed by Van Ness Feldman on behalf of Chevron U.S.A. Inc., which indirectly or through affiliates owns six cogeneration QFs with market-based rate tariffs.  Chevron filed the petition in light of the prevailing uncertainty in the industry as to whether QFs with market-based rate tariffs remain exempt from section 203 of the FPA.  As definitively stated by FERC in today’s order, “the Commission finds that a QF that qualifies for the exemption contained in 292.601(c) of the Commission’s regulations from the FPA section 203(a)(1) filing requirements is indeed exempt from such filing requirements, even if the QF has a MBR tariff and/or generator interconnection facilities."  A copy of the FERC order is available here.