ERCOT Board Approves 2009 Congestion Zones

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The board of directors of the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) have approved the 2009 transmission congestion zones and changes to ancillary services procurement methodology.

After consideration of an appeal by American Electric Power (AEP), the board approved the congestion zones, commercially significant constraints (CSC) and closely related elements (CRE), as recommended by the technical advisory committee (TAC), effectively denying AEP's appeal of TAC's recommendation. The board is required by ERCOT protocols to review the CSC, CRE and congestion zone designations each year.

The board also approved changes to ERCOT's ancillary services methodology to account for increases in wind generation. Effective Nov. 1, ERCOT will purchase reserves based on accuracy of wind and load forecasts, rather than a flat 1,354 MW procurement, historically based on the size of the largest generation unit in ERCOT.

Also, the increase in installed wind capacity will be taken into account when determining upcoming reserve requirements. The current installed wind capacity in the ERCOT region is 6,023 MW and is expected to be more than 8,000 MW by the end of the year and around 8,500 MW in 2009.

The board approved six protocol revision requests (PRRs) and nodal PRRs:

– time of use revisions,

– implementation of PUC Subst. R. 25.505(f), publication of resource and load information,

– load resource type indicator for ancillary service (AS) trades and self-arranged AS,

– resource node updated definitions,

– synchronization of zonal protocols, and

– five reliability unit commitment deployments needed before requiring verifiable costs.

In addition, the board remanded one protocol revision request back to the TAC for further study. PRR 769 would remove the required energy conservation appeal from the emergency procedures and allow ERCOT management to issue an appeal for energy conservation at management's discretion, without requiring CEO authorization.

SOURCE: Electric Reliability Council of Texas

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