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President Barack Obama has nominated Ron Binz, former chairman of the Colorado Public Utilities Commission (PUC), to serve as chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). In May, Jon Wellinghoff revealed plans to step down from his post as FERC chairman but remain in the position until a successor is confirmed.

Binz served as Colorado PUC chairman from 2007 to 2011 and has headed Public Policy Consulting, a regulatory consulting firm, since 2011. He is also a senior policy advisor with the Center for the New Energy Economy.

Many in the utility industry have annoucned support for Binz.

Ralph Izzo, CEO and president of Public Service Enterprise Group (PSEG), said in a statement, “The electric industry is experiencing rapid change and technological advances, and Ron Binz is a strong and timely choice to lead FERC. Ron has both the experience and intellect to hit the ground running and ensure thoughtful consideration of emerging opportunities.”

NextEra Energy Inc., a clean energy company and parent of Florida Power & Light Co., also released a statement backing President Obama’s choice.

"Ron is a proven leader who recognizes the need for diversity in the U.S. electricity supply and understands our country needs smart policies to modernize the grid to match up with today's changing energy mix,” said NextEra Energy President and CEO Jim Robo. “Ron has served effectively as chairman of the Colorado Public Utilities Commission and as an active member of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners. His record of achievement would serve the country well in leading the FERC."

Binz’s nomination now goes to the U.S. Senate for confirmation.


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