With ERCOT’s frequent congestion in West Texas, getting the precise area (or line) when trading, managing or assessing congestion is crucial. Ending up on the wrong side of these constraints can be costly.
In October, the day-ahead and real-time trends have included strong LPLMK_LPLNE_1 congestion. But what is driving this congestion? Will it continue? Our analysts took a closer look at these questions using Enverus’ new P&R Forecast solution.
The screenshot below shows our breakdown of the noted constraint. The top chart shows the real-time constraint flows coming from our real-time congestion and generation solution, MUSE, including the hourly shadow price (red shading). From here, our auto analysis breaks down flows by looking at the impact from transmission outages (second chart), and generation and load (third and fourth charts).
The second chart assesses the impact of transmission outages on the constraint. You’ll notice a lot of shading, indicating there are some transmission outages impacting the flows. The hover box shows the outages and their impact on flows. We'll focus on the pink shading, which represents some nearby transmission outages. As of now, those outages appear to end Nov 18, 2022 .
We then break down the constraint by generation impact. The white box highlights the fuel-level breakdown during one binding event (Oct. 3 HE4), which shows the largest impact is from wind. The green shading seems correlated to the constraint flows and binding events in the top chart. Another interesting note is that solar impact is negative (red box), indicating this is really an off-peak risk as solar generation reduces constraint flows.
Does this mean wind in general causes this congestion? Taking a closer look into the fuel type and zone breakdown provides more details. In the image below, it shows how the strong North WZ wind is driving the increase in flows.
By understanding the impact of the congestion on Resource Nodes and Hub prices, market participants can gain better insight into hedging opportunities around these areas of volatility. This constraint does have a primary driver in the intermittent renewable wind in North and West Texas as well as counter flow (relieving) from nearby solar projects. To predict what conditions will cause this congestion over the next week, we took a look at our P&R Forecast solution.
Below, you see the next six days of forecast for the LPLMK-LPLNE. To the left of the vertical white dotted line is all the historical data provided by MUSE. To the right is the P&R Forecast, including forecasted post contingency line flows, the forecasted monitored line flows and any forecasted shadow prices. From Oct. 11-12, the purple shading indicates shadow prices and the return of this constraint.
In the second graph, there are still transmission outages, increasing constraint flows for the next six days. In the third graph, you see the return of North weather zone wind (Panhandle wind), which is helping drive the flow higher Oct. 11 and 12, resulting in forecasted shadow prices. However, the lack of wind in prior days aligns with lower flows.
The P&R Forecast allows users to see the forecast, the specific hours with the highest risk and the fundamental drivers that comprise the forecast, including transmission outages, generation and demand.
The max exposure path of this constraint as shown in MUSE is MASSENGL_G8 to T_CK_GT2_RN. From Sept. 19-Oct. 4, a cleared PTP on this path during HE 1-9 and 20-24 would have resulted in approximately $7,500 profit per megawatt for each hour. Determining the drivers of the congestion and the best hours to bid the path is critical in identifying these opportunities and making confident decisions.
Interested in learning more about how our solutions remove the guesswork when it comes to hedging risks and identifying opportunities? Contact our team at Enverus to learn more about the MUSE and P&R Forecast solutions used for this analysis.