Alliance Regional Transmission
Organization to File for Regulatory Approval

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Alliance Regional Transmission Organization (Alliance RTO), a group of eastern and midwestern electric utility companies, will submit to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) within the next week a proposal to form an independent, regional transmission organization (RTO) that, if approved, would become one of the largest independent RTOs in the world.

The four companies that sponsored Phase III of the Alliance RTO development – American Electric Power (NYSE: AEP), Consumers Energy (NYSE: CMS), FirstEnergy Corp.
(NYSE: FE), and Virginia Power (NYSE: D) – will be joined in the FERC filing by Detroit Edison (NYSE: DTE). These five companies own 43,000 miles of transmission lines and serve 26 million people within 124,000 square miles in nine states.

“The Alliance RTO will play an important role in developing and expanding the electric power market by ensuring efficient transmission service for electric transactions,” said Stan Szwed, chairman of the Alliance RTO and FirstEnergy vice president – Transmission. “It goes beyond the functional unbundling requirements by creating a truly independent business model that promotes fair and effective competition.”

Detroit Edison was involved in the initial phases of the Alliance RTO development as a transmission owner, and remained involved as an interested party. “We decided to participate as a transmission owner because we believe the Alliance RTO will maximize the value of our assets, provide non-discriminatory access to the grid, and be a major stepping stone to implementation of the Michigan Public Service Commission’s retail access program,” said Joe Welch, Detroit Edison’s manager of Transmission.

The proposed structure will provide for the creation of an independent transmission entity that could control, operate and own transmission facilities, while controlling and operating the transmission facilities of other companies. This gives transmission owners the flexibility to maintain or divest ownership of their facilities, while ensuring independent operation. The Alliance RTO, as proposed, will be managed and controlled by a board of directors whose members will not be affiliated with any transmission owner.

“We believe our proposal exceeds the minimum standards outlined in FERC’s orders 888 and 889, and is largely consistent with its recently issued Notice of Proposed Rulemaking,” said Szwed. “These include requirements for independence, flexibility, geographic size and shape, and protocols to ensure safe, reliable and equitable operation of RTOs.”

American Electric Power (www.aep.com), headquartered in Columbus, Ohio, serves portions of Ohio, Indiana, Michigan, Kentucky, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia. Consumers Energy (www.consumersenergy.com), headquartered in Jackson, Mich., serves much of Michigan’s lower peninsula. Detroit Edison (www.dteenergy.com), headquartered in Detroit, Mich., and the principal operating subsidiary of DTE Energy, serves southeastern Michigan. FirstEnergy (www.firstenergycorp.com), headquartered in Akron, Ohio, serves northern and central Ohio and western Pennsylvania. Virginia Power (www.vapower.com), headquartered in Richmond, Va., and a subsidiary of Dominion Resources, serves portions of Virginia and North Carolina.

Information about the Alliance RTO can be found at www.alliancerto.com.

For More Information, Contact:
Pat Hemlepp
American Electric Power
(614) 223-1620

Ellen Raines
FirstEnergy Corp.
(330) 384-5808

Charles MacInnis
Consumers Energy
(517) 788-2396

Tom Kazas
Virginia Power
(804) 771-6115

Lorie Kessler
Detroit Edison
(313) 235-8807

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