This morning, on his first full day in office, President Joe Biden appointed Richard Glick chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. Glick joined FERC as a commissioner in late 2017, having been picked for the job by President Trump in August of that year. His term ends June 30, 2022.
“I'm honored President Joe Biden has selected me to be @FERC Chairman, thank you Mr. @POTUS,” Glick tweeted. “This is an important moment to make significant progress on the transition to a clean energy future. I look forward to working with my colleagues to tackle the many challenges ahead!”
The resume: Before joining the commission, Glick was general counsel for the Democrats on the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, serving as a senior policy advisor on numerous issues, including electricity and renewable energy. Prior to that, he was vice president of government affairs for Iberdrola’s renewable energy, electric and gas utility, and natural gas storage businesses in the United States.
Glick has also worked as a senior policy advisor to former energy secretary Bill Richardson and as legislative director and chief counsel to former Arkansas senator Dale Bumpers.
Why it matters: Republicans currently hold a 3-to-2 edge on the commission—with Neil Chatterjee, James Danly, and newest FERC member Mark Christie—but will lose that advantage at the end of June, when Chatterjee’s term expires. At that point, President Biden will almost certainly nominate a Democrat to fill the open seat. Should that nominee be confirmed, Democrats would then have the majority.
Further, Glick is known as a critic of FERC’s December 2019 order regarding PJM Interconnection’s forward-looking capacity auctions. The controversial order instructed PJM—operator of the largest wholesale competitive electricity market in the country—to expand its minimum offer price rule (MOPR) to include new and existing energy resources, including nuclear and renewables, that receive state subsidies.
In an American Council on Renewable Energy virtual event held last November, Glick stated, “I cannot talk about pending cases. But I think the commission has done a disservice to state clean energy programs by adopting a MOPR-type program, essentially raising the costs of generation that’s subsidized in some way by states focused on clean energy.”