Reports says there are sufficient power resources in New England

Published on February 12, 2019 by Dave Kovaleski

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There are sufficient power system resources in New England to meet peak demand in 2022-2023, according to a new report.

A power resources auction, conducted by ISO New England, found that the power system resources totaled 43,641 megawatts (MW), including 34,925 MW of existing capacity and 238 new resources totaling 8,716 MW. This includes commitments from 34,839 MW to be available in 2022-2023, with 1,089 MW of surplus supply over the capacity requirement. The regional capacity target for 2022-2023 is 33,750 MW.

The auction also indicates that the clearing price was the lowest in six years. The auction closed at a preliminary clearing price of $3.80 per kilowatt-month (kW-month) across New England, compared to $4.63/kW-month in last year’s auction. The auction closed with Vineyard Wind, an offshore wind project in development off the coast of Massachusetts, assuming an obligation of 54 megawatts from an existing resource that will retire in 2022-2023.

“This year’s auctions procured the resources needed for a reliable power system at a competitive price while implementing new procedures to accommodate state-sponsored renewable resources,” Robert Ethier, vice president of market operations at ISO New England, said. “It’s our responsibility to run these auctions and our wholesale markets under the rules approved by FERC, and we fulfilled that responsibility again this year.”

The annual auction is held three years before each capacity commitment period to provide time for new resources to be developed. Resources can include traditional power plants, renewable generation, imports, and demand resources. The auction results will be filed with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) by the end of February.