Ameren Transmission Co. of Illinois, a unit of Ameren Corp., received important regulatory approval from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to continue to move its Spoon River and Mark Twain transmission construction projects forward. FERC approved similar regulatory treatment for the Illinois Rivers transmission project in May 2011.
The three projects are part of the $1.3 billion multi-value projects approved by the Midwest Independent Transmission System Operator Inc. (MISO) board in December 2011. MISO is a regional transmission organization serving an 11-state region, including the service territories of the Ameren utilities, and the Canadian province of Manitoba.
This approval paves the way for important new investment by Ameren Transmission Co. of Illinois to deliver renewable energy in the Midwest, promote electric power reliability, lower costs for consumers by reducing transmission congestion and create jobs which are important to the economy.
FERC's approved regulatory treatment includes enhanced cost-recovery mechanisms and protections for Ameren Transmission Co. of Illinois that support the investments and facilitate the cost-effective financing of the projects.
The Spoon River project in Illinois, preliminarily estimated to cost $208 million, will span about 70 miles of new 345-kV transmission line from Oak Grove to Galesburg, Ill., continuing near Peoria, Ill.
The Mark Twain project in Missouri, preliminarily estimated to cost $155 million, will span about 90 miles in Missouri of new 345-kV transmission line from the Iowa border to Adair, Mo., on to Palmyra, Mo.
The Illinois Rivers project, preliminarily estimated to cost $1 billion, will span about 400 miles with a new 345-kV transmission line, crossing the Mississippi River near Quincy, Ill., continuing east across Illinois to the Indiana border. ATXI has filed a petition with the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC) for a certificate to build the Illinois Rivers project. ATXI expects the ICC to issue a decision by mid-2013.