NERC matters: Eliminating zero-tolerance enforcement


  • Deborah Carpentier

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    • Deborah Carpentier ( is a senior counsel in Dickstein Shapiro LLP's Energy Practice. She focuses primarily on federal regulatory and transactional energy issues for electric utilities and natural gas companies in matters before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC). This article is provided by Dickstein Shapiro LLP only for educational and informational purposes and is neither intended as nor should it be construed as legal advice. This article may be considered advertising under applicable state laws.


Since the mandatory enforcement of Reliability Standards, the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) and its eight regional entities (collectively, “NERC Enterprise”) have prosecuted almost every potential violation, regardless of the risk posed to the bulk electric system (BES) resulting from such violation. Even if many of these violations resulted in zero or nominal penalties, the resources expended by the NERC Enterprise and the entities that must comply with the NERC Reliability Standards, called “Registered Entities,” were substantially similar in scope to the resources dedicated to the prosecution of higher-risk violations.