FERC Clarifies QF Recertification Requirement


In an order issued on March 30, 2010,1 the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) clarified one ambiguity in its qualifying facility (QF) regulations, while leaving another in its wake. Resolved is the issue of whether a recertification filing is required when there has been a material change in the facts presented by a QF in its prior notice of self-certification or application for FERC certification. In sum, FERC clarified that a recertification filing is generally not required for a QF to maintain its QF status so long as the QF (1) continues to meet the QF criteria (e.g., the operating and efficiency criteria), and (2) has previously filed a notice of self-certification or application for FERC certification. FERC advised that obtaining recertification may nonetheless be beneficial to the QF in certain circumstances even if it is not strictly required by the regulations – for example, to meet lender or utility requirements or to obtain the certainty that recertification would provide. Unresolved is how much a cogeneration QF may expand its generating capacity before FERC treats it as a “new” cogeneration facility, thereby requiring a new self-certification or application for FERC certification.


FERC’s order was issued on an application filed by Medical Area Total Energy Plant, Inc. and New MATEP, Inc. (collectively, MATEP) for FERC recertification of the QF status of the MATEP cogeneration facility.2 The facility had previously been self-certified as a QF.3 As part of an expansion and restructuring of the ownership of the facility, MATEP sought FERC recertification.

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