Most states in the United States have passed deregulation legislation that allows for third-parties, other than the utility, to sell gas to consumers. Check our directory of sellers to see if your state has a deregulated natural gas market.
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) is the regulatory body that handles federal oversight for the natural gas industry. FERC has jurisdiction over interstate pipelines and oversees the implementation and operation of the natural gas transportation infrastructure. The utilities themselves are regulated by state utility commissions which oversee rate structures, infrastructure issues, and ensure proper supply and distribution of natural gas.
The current regulation of transportation pipelines by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has designated that interstate pipelines can serve only as transporters of natural gas. In the past, interstate pipelines acted as both a transporter of natural gas, as well as a seller of the commodity, both of which were rolled up into a bundled product and sold for one price. However, since FERC Order 636, interstate pipelines are no longer permitted to act as merchants and sell bundled products. Instead, they can only sell the transportation component, and never take ownership of the natural gas themselves. Pipelines must also now offer access to their transportation infrastructure to all other market players
equally, referred to as 'open access' to the pipelines. This allows sellers, producers, LDCs, and even end users themselves to contract for transportation of their natural gas via interstate pipeline, on an equal and unbiased basis.