The Costs and Benefits of Transmission
About 5-10% of a typical monthly electric bill goes to pay for transmission. An expanded investment in transmission would slightly increase that part of a consumer’s electric bill, although the increased cost would be more than offset by a significant decrease in the energy costs that make up the majority of the remainder of the electric bill as electricity costs are driven down due to increased competition, reduced electricity losses, and greater access to lower cost generating options. Additional benefits for consumers include greater protection against volatility in the price of fuels and reductions in costly blackouts. Finally, private sector transmission investment creates jobs and brings economic development to the rural communities that need it most.
Analysis by the Texas grid operator found that a major investment in new transmission would pay for itself in a matter of years, as new wind resources that were developed to use the new transmission would offset the use of natural gas for electricity production, as shown in the chart below.