- Peak Reliability announced on Wednesday it will wind down operations at the end of next year, following about a year of effort to provide reliability coordination (RC) services in the West.
- Peak also announced that it is ending a partnership with PJM Connext, which the pair had formed to explore reliability services and markets in the West.
- The decision to stop providing RC services comes a month after the Southwest Power Pool (SPP) announced plans to begin providing coordination services in the Western Interconnection. The operator said more than two dozen utilities had expressed an interest in signing up.
The shakeup among reliability coordinators got a jolt this week when Peak Reliability, the RC for the majority of the Western Interconnection, announced it would wind down operations at the end of next year.
The coordinator said the decision follows a year of effort by Peak "to provide a viable, long-term RC option for the West."
Peak said the process to determine next steps for reliability services beyond the end of 2019 resulted in feedback from its funding parties that "clearly indicates overwhelming support for Peak to wind down the organization."
The Mountain West Transmission Group had planned to join SPP and stop utilizing RC services provided by Peak Reliability, but Xcel Energy balked in April, leaving that plan in limbo. SPP is one of 10 U.S. reliability coordinators in the Eastern Interconnection.
The coordinator also said it would be ending the partnership it announced last year with a subsidiary of PJM Interconnection to possibly provide reliability services and explore markets in the West. Peak said it withdrew from the agreement with PJM Connext to prevent its dissolution "from creating an unnecessary distraction to the PJM Connext initiative which has over the past several months gained traction among Western entities."
Peak and Connext did not provide details of the partnership when they announced it in December, but said they were reviewing potential reliability services, market design, governance, product suites and rules.
Following Peak's announcement of the PJM Connext agreement, the California ISO in January revealed it would begin to act as its own reliability coordinator. CAISO also offered to provide reliability coordinator services to other parties in the Western Interconnection "at significantly reduced costs."