Taking a cue from what apparently began with Southern California Edison, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission decided to start a process to socialize new transmission line costs if regional grid operators want to do so. \u201cIt\u2019s up to the regions,\u201d said commission chair Jon Wellinghoff. \u201cIf there\u2019s no benefits, there\u2019s no costs.\u201d He added that the July 21 decision gives regions--like the California Independent System Operator--guidelines to allow new transmission costs to be driven by public policy. In California, that includes a requirement to have 33 percent of electricity supply come from renewable resources. In turn, that law engenders new transmission infrastructure. Because the social requirement is set to benefit all Californians, the transmission infrastructure\u2019s cost may be spread out to the state\u2019s ratepayers. While this structure began with Edison\u2019s Antelope line in 2005--set to bring wind power from the Tehachapis to urban centers--the concept may be applied to all regional transmission providers. Currently, most transmission payment is done on a utility specific basis--that is, only customers of one utility pay for that utility\u2019s infrastructure. \u201cThe grid will no longer be piecemeal and ad hoc,\u201d said commissioner Marc Spitzer. The California Independent System Operator stated it couldn\u2019t comment on the federal decision until it had a chance to study it. The new cost structure may be adopted in different ways among different regions, noted Wellinghoff. Accommodating new renewable supplies is the major reason for a change. According to Wellinghoff, 60 percent of new sources \u201cwill be wind and solar.\u201d He added renewables \u201cwill require investments\u201d for new miles of transmission lines. The move to regionalize costs was opposed by several Midwest, Atlantic seaboard, and Southern utilities. They maintain the decision raises rates.