PJM to pay for emergency load reduction

PJM Interconnection LLC, the grid operator for the US Mid-Atlantic states, Friday filed with the US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission details of a program that will pay participants to reduce their own electric load on the grid or operate backup generation during peak demand.


PJM Interconnection LLC, the grid operator for the US Mid-Atlantic states, Friday filed with the US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission details of a program that will pay participants to reduce their own electric load on the grid or operate backup generation during peak demand.

PJM says the program will provide economic incentives for participants to reduce their load during PJM emergency events, prior to purchasing emergency power. The pilot program was developed in response to a May 17 FERC notice to help avert summer power shortages and is in effect through Sept. 30.

PJM says eligible participants must be PJM members that can completely disconnect from the local distribution system and supply the required load via local emergency backup generators or that can reduce load by a minimum of 100 kw for at least 10 hr during the pilot period. Participants must be capable of achieving full reduction within 1 hr of PJM's request to reduce load, and be available between 9 a.m. and 10 p.m. 7 days a week, it says.

For the time being, PJM says it is waiving its application fee and $1,500/year membership fee.

Participants must also install metering equipment that meets PJM specifications. PJM says it will pay the higher of the appropriate zonal locational marginal price or $500/Mw-hr to the PJM member nominating the load. Reimbursement for reducing load will be based on the kw-hr relief provided.

"We are excited about this program that will provide an important resource during times of high electricity usage. The program will augment the region's well-established emergency procedures," says Bruce Balmat, vice-president, system operations.

PJM says the new program will be used in conjunction with its successful generation interconnection process, which deals with generation projects applying to become part of regional capacity, and with the active load management programs that are in operation.

PJM currently administers almost 8% of the US's electric power, with a pooled generating capacity of over 58,000 Mw and a membership of more than 190.

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