CAISO Civil Litigation


IID v. CAISO  Regionalization of CAISO

Signed into law last fall, Senate Bill 350 mandates California utilities to achieve a 50 percent renewable portfolio standard by 2030. It also provides the California Independent System Operator a path toward creating a multi-state regional transmission organization.Specifically, the law requires CAISO to perform a series of studies on the impacts of a regional electricity market, hold public workshops to review the results of these studies and submit all required documents with proposed governance modifications to the governor by Dec. 31, 2017.

Concerned that CAISO has not made public the impact studies, modeling and assumptions used to produce its proposal to create a western regional transmission operator, the Imperial Irrigation District sued CAISO in the Superior Court of California on June 28, 2016 asking for full public disclosure.

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IID v. CAISO Antitrust Litigation 

On July 16, 2015, the Imperial Irrigation District commenced civil litigation in U.S. District Court, Southern District of California, against the California Independent System Operator Corp. for its deliberate and systematic marginalization of IID, its ratepayers and all renewable energy generators seeking to develop projects in the district’s service area. Through its actions over many years, CAISO has exercised its monopoly power to manipulate the import capability values, or deliverability, it assigns to IID to stifle competition, create uncertainty in the marketplace and effectively take over IID’s energy balancing authority area.

IID filed its First Amended Complaint on January 6, 2016.

On Friday, Feb. 3, U.S. District Judge Anthony Battaglia issued a decision that will allow the Imperial Irrigation District to proceed with its legal claim to recover millions of dollars from the California Independent System Operator for CAISO’s misuse of IID’s electric power lines. The Court ruled that IID had stated a valid claim against CAISO for “conversion” of the district’s power lines, meaning CAISO used IID electricity transmission lines to transport CAISO electricity without IID’s permission and without paying IID for use of its grid. In his decision, Judge Battaglia allows IID to gather evidence to show CAISO planned to use “IID’s transmission facilities to import substantial out-of-state power without compensation to IID …”

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