By Rory D. Sweeney
FERC last week approved PJM’s cost-responsibility assignments for its updated Regional Transmission Expansion Plan, dismissing complaints from Dayton Power and Light that one of the projects should have been allocated completely to Dominion Resources (ER16-2539).
DP&L protested PJM’s request that the costs to rebuild the Carson-Rogers Road 500-kV transmission line in Virginia (project b2744) be distributed as part of regional reliability maintenance and should instead go completely to Dominion. DP&L said PJM’s choice wasn’t the most cost-effective, as the grid operator had presented a $24 million option at its Transmission Expansion Advisory Committee meeting in May but selected a $48.5 million project proposed by Virginia Electric and Power Co. because it also resolved a local-planning criterion for Dominion.
Additionally, DP&L argued the reliability violation came from an outdated load growth forecast and that “updated forecasts suggest that there may be no regional reliability violation.”
“Dayton Power contends that there appears to be a disconnect in PJM’s planning process such that a generation interconnection study, using one set of assumptions, may permit the interconnection of a generator without charging the generator for network service upgrades, while an RTEP study, using a different set of assumptions may find that there are network service upgrades that are needed with that generator interconnecting,” FERC summarized in its ruling.
PJM responded that DP&L was missing the point of the filing and should have raised any concerns it had at the May TEAC meeting. The RTO said the filing is for FERC to determine if PJM’s decisions conform with FERC’s approved methods, not whether individual allocations are accurate.
It’s also not a question of cheapest option, PJM said, but most cost-efficient and effective according to its engineering analysis. Although it reviewed other proposals, it explained, none of them also addressed the local criterion concerns.
Dominion said that just because the project also solves its local issue doesn’t mean it’s not suitable for inclusion in the RTEP.
The commission said “Dayton Power has not supported its assertion that this issue was not adequately vetted within the stakeholder process. We find that while Dayton Power disputes PJM’s selection of project b2744, Dayton Power makes no assertion that the process that PJM undertook in selecting project b2744 in the PJM regional transmission plan for the purposes of cost allocation is inconsistent with Schedule 6 of the PJM Operating Agreement.”