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Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions
September 2020

Options on a Continuum of Competition for the Southeastern Electricity Sector

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Conversations around the future of the southeastern electricity sector are lighting up across the region, from stakeholder discussions on the North Carolina Energy Regulatory Process to RTO study bills and utility negotiations around a Southeast Energy Exchange Market. Stakeholders may come to the table with different perspectives and positions, but they share the common goals of reliability, affordability, and adaptability given new technologies, external threats, and shifting customer demands. Competition comes up a great deal in these conversations; too often the concept sends stakeholders into two distinct camps. And yet, competition is not a yes or no question. Therefore, the purpose of this policy brief is to describe different ways to engender consumer choice, third-party participation, resource sharing, and regional grid management in the power sector, using existing examples from this region. It includes questions stakeholders might think through in these conversations, and fundamentally aims to educate and inform.