"Planning continues for a $30 billion grid expansion across a wide swath of the central United States to help states and utilities accelerate the shift from fossil fuels to renewable energy over the next 30 years.
But before the region’s grid operator, the Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO), can even approve an initial set of projects, the process is mired in a thorny debate over who will pay for them.
There’s broad agreement that expansion of regional and interregional transmission is needed for the United States to replace an aging fleet of coal- and natural gas-fired generation with renewable energy. But that’s about all that many different interests involved in the planning process agree on.
Progress is specifically threatened by friction over how the benefits of the new lines are determined, which will dictate how the costs are shared. And the most visible split is among transmission owners and states in MISO’s northern region and states in the Gulf South and the region’s biggest utility — Entergy Corp."