CPP Task Force Reviews its Messaging
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Lanny Nickell, SPP’s vice president of engineering, told the Regional State Committee on Oct. 26 that the Clean Power Plan Review Task Force has begun meeting and participating in stakeholder events with state regulatory and air-quality groups, environmental groups and legislative representatives.
Nickell said the task force, which is reviewing the final version of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan, continuously stresses its talking points. They include calls for a regional-compliance approach over a state-by-state approach — “bigger the trading market, the better,” Nickell said — state plans developed in parallel with litigation; and telling audiences that SPP is “best positioned” to conduct reliability reviews of state plans.
“From a reliability perspective, we believe states that develop [implementation plans] give us the leverage to look at … reliability,” Nickell said, responding to concern about the level of SPP’s interaction with the states. “If our assessment yields reliability concerns we would share that by early 2016.”
The task force faces a Jan. 21 deadline to file comments with EPA.
RSC OKs Wind Study
The RSC unanimously approved the scope of a study considering changes to a rule barring base plan transmission funding for wind generation projects that push wind’s share of capacity above 20% of summer peak load.
The study resulted from Western Farmers Electric Cooperative’s April request for base plan transmission funding for a wind generation project that would have boosted wind to 25% of its peak load.
Although the Markets and Operations Policy Committee rejected the co-op’s request, several members called for review of the rules on base plan funding — set years ago when SPP was comprised of smaller balancing authorities and there was concern over being able to balance large swings in wind generation. (See Wind Waiver Rejected; SPP Members will Revisit Assumptions.)
The study scope was proposed by the Cost Allocation Working Group, which will return with a recommendation on whether to change, eliminate or keep the current process. The group hopes to complete its work by the end of next year.
New Allocation Process for Long-Term Congestion Rights
The RSC also approved a Tariff revision request establishing a new incremental long-term congestion rights (ILTCR) allocation process.
The revision request addresses a 2014 FERC order finding fault with SPP’s interpretation of LTCRs. The commission rejected multiple rehearing requests in July. (See FERC Rejects Rehearing on SPP Congestion Rights.)
The new process will result in awards to market participants with ILTCRs when a transmission upgrade goes into service, instead of waiting until the annual LTCR allocation. Rights awarded in the initial allocation cannot be renewed; participants with candidate ILTCRs will be eligible to nominate in the same round of the next annual LTCR allocation as load-serving entity LTCRs.
New Chair, Members for RSC
The RSC meeting was Dana Murphy’s last as the committee’s chairperson. Murphy, an Oklahoma Corporation Commissioner in her fourth year on the committee, handed over her responsibilities to Patrick Lyons, chairman of the New Mexico Public Regulation Commission.
Murphy, always quick to thank those around her and hand out compliments, expressed gratitude to the members and SPP. “It’s stretched and grown me,” she said.
The committee also welcomed three new members as a result of the Integrated System’s incorporation into SPP: Brian Kalk (North Dakota Public Service Commission), Kristie Fiegen (South Dakota Public Utilities Commission) and Libby Jacobs (Iowa Utilities Board). With the additions, the RSC now numbers 10 members.
— Tom Kleckner