Southwest Power Pool anticipates sufficient energy resources for summer reliability
LITTLE ROCK, ARK. — Southwest Power Pool (SPP), the grid operator responsible for coordinating electric reliability for a 15-state region in the central U.S., expects to have enough generating capacity to meet the regional demand for electricity through the 2023 summer season.
SPP staff discussed the 2023 Summer Seasonal Assessment during the May 18 Summer 2023 Preparedness Workshop and Emergency Communications User Forum. SPP conducts this assessment each year to identify and mitigate threats to reliability during the summer season lasting from June to September. The analysis considers factors such as historical and predicted future electricity use, weather forecasts, the variability of available wind energy, drought conditions and generation and transmission outages.
The 2023 Summer Seasonal Assessment anticipates normal conditions across the SPP region and shows a 99.5% probability SPP will have sufficient resources available to serve region-wide load during peak hours throughout the summer. Even if peak electricity use exceeds forecasts by as much as 5%, the study still found a 95% likelihood SPP will maintain resource sufficiency to serve all load. If extreme weather, unexpected outages or other circumstances affect the region, SPP has systems, tools and procedures ready to mitigate risks and maintain electric reliability. Under different scenarios, the grid operator may call on generating units to commit to run earlier or more often than usual, delay planned outages, import energy from neighboring systems or tap into available reserves depending on the severity and duration of a reliability event.
“Ensuring there is enough capacity available to meet the needs of our customers is our most important role as a regional transmission organization, reliability coordinator and balancing authority for our region,” said Bruce Rew, Senior Vice President of Operations. “While our summer assessment didn’t raise any reliability concerns, we continue to plan for exceptional operational circumstances and work closely with our members to prepare for any possibility. We monitor the grid and make changes as necessary to responsibly and economically keep the lights on.”
If conditions threaten reliability, SPP will communicate with members, stakeholders and the public through the grid notice email distribution list and social media. Current grid conditions can be found at https://spp.org/markets-operations/current-grid-conditions.