- Southwest Power Pool (SPP) said Monday it has received commitments from more than a dozen western utilities to be its first customers when it begins offering reliability coordinator (RC) services in December 2019.
- The grid operator also said it will soon finalize plans for the governance and operation of its western reliability coordination services, including filling a number of positions related to system operations and engineering.
- There has been a shakeup among reliability coordinators recently: In January, the California ISO (CAISO) announced it would take steps to act as its own reliability coordinator, leaving Peak Reliability, and would offer those services to others as well.
Its RC services won't go live until the end of next year and there is still much to do, but SPP has commitments from multiple utilities, giving it reason for optimism.
"Following a year-long build-out of the necessary systems, processes and staff to support effective reliability coordination, SPP will seek to be certified as an RC in the second half of 2019," SPP said in a statement.
The grid operator also said it is is working with Peak and CAISO to coordinate operations with other reliability coordinators in the Western Interconnection "and will ensure there are no gaps in situational awareness throughout customers' transitions from one RC to another."
The utilities that SPP said have committed include:
- Arizona Electric Power Cooperative
- Three utilities owned by Black Hills Energy: Black Hills Power, Cheyenne Light, Fuel and Power, and Black Hills Colorado Electric
- City of Farmington, N.M.
- Colorado Springs Utilities
- El Paso Electric
- Intermountain Rural Electric Association
- Platte River Power Authority
- Xcel Energy's Public Service Company of Colorado
- Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association
- Tucson Electric Power
- Western Area Power Administration Desert Southwest Region, WAPA Rocky Mountain Region and WAPA Upper Great Plains – West
SPP said it has provided contract RC services across a multi-state region in the past and expanded its services and territory several times in the last decade.
The Mountain West Transmission Group had planned to join SPP and stop utilizing RC services provided by Peak, but Xcel Energy reversed course in April. SPP is one of 10 U.S. reliability coordinators in the Eastern Interconnection and says it has an RC service territory that extends from the Canadian border to the Texas panhandle.