September 10, 2013
Dear Secretary Moniz:
As the Chairman and Ranking Member of the House Natural Resources Committee, we urge you to allow a pending fact-finding initiative on integrating wind and other intermittent resources be completed in order to allow the Bonneville Power Administration (Bonneville) and the Western Area Power Administration (Western) to make sound business decisions on behalf of their existing customers.
As you know, the Northwest Power Pool (NWPP) has created a Market Assessment and Coordination Initiative (Initiative) to evaluate a number of tools to help utilities respond to the operational and cost challenges of integrating intermittent resources such as wind and solar into its regional electric grid. NWPP is a voluntary organization of generating utilities in the Pacific Northwest, northern California, Rocky Mountains, British Columbia, and Alberta. The purpose of the organization is to help its members achieve benefits through coordinated utility operations. These utilities have been doing business together, on a voluntary bilateral basis, for decades. The studies in the Initiative take into account the unique characteristics of the NWPP region: its significant hydropower resources, the degree of wind penetration relative to load, existing reserve sharing agreements, and 20 individual Balancing Authorities operated by both FERC-jurisdictional and non-jurisdictional utilities. Participants agree that there is likely no single “silver bullet” to resolve the hour-to-hour and day-to-day swings particularly with wind generation. For that reason, the Initiative is assessing a number of potential tools, including an Energy Imbalance Market (EIM) and other measures.
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