TOPEKA – Governor Laura Kelly has urged the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to take all necessary and possible steps to investigate the causes of the system failures during the recent extreme-weather event in Kansas and protect Kansans from natural gas and electricity price surges resulting from increased demand.
Kansas Corporation Commission (KCC) Chair Andrew French, Commissioner Dwight D. Keen, and Commissioner Susan K. Duffy also signed onto the letter urging a federal investigation.
“I have directed my administration to use every tool at our disposal to ensure Kansans are protected from price surges, and that our system is better prepared to handle problems created by circumstances like extreme cold weather,”Governor Kelly said. “We will remain in communication with the Biden Administration to secure aid, and continue to encourage Congress to pass a stimulus package with state and local funding to provide relief to Kansas communities.”
“The recent energy pricing and supply emergency will have serious financial implications for all Kansans and the KCC will take every action within our authority to ease that burden,” Chairman French said. “However, our jurisdictional reach is limited. We need swift and decisive leadership at the federal level, as well.”
Specifically, Governor Kelly and the Kansas Corporation Commission called for the FERC to:
- Examine the circumstances that reduced the supply of natural gas and compromised pressures on interstate pipelines;
- Exercise its authority under Sections 4A and 23 of the Natural Gas Act and take all actions within its power to protect consumers and ensure the integrity of natural gas price indices;
- Work with NERC to investigate whether additional reliability mechanisms are needed to respond to similar events like this in the future.
The Kelly Administration and the KCC look forward to working with the FERC in any way they can to ensure similar adverse public health and economic impacts never occur again because of extreme weather conditions.