Stakeholder Report

MAY 2024

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Barbara Sugg, President and CEO

As you’re undoubtedly aware, resource adequacy has tied with cyber security as SPP’s number one risk. We face serious risks as a region and must work together to understand and solve these challenges, which include:

  • Significant and unconventional load growth
  • Increasing variable energy resources in the fleet and generator interconnection queue
  • Energy transition that is outpacing technological advances
  • Shrinking conventional generation fleet
  • Transmission constraints that inhibit getting generation to load
  • Delays in building new transmission and bringing new generation online
  • Extreme weather events that are becoming the norm rather than the exception

Quite simply, what got us here will not get us there. Never before has resolving resource adequacy risks been more important than it is now. SPP’s REAL Team of regulators, members, and directors is working very hard to implement new policies to mitigate reliability risks. Working together, we must solve these challenges and ensure our region remains reliable and affordable while meeting energy goals.

 Thank you,

Barbara



Real-time prices increased 9% since last quarter, from an average of $21.28/MWh in Q4 2023 to $23.24/MWh in Q1 2024. After a brief spike in average gas prices – increasing from $2.10/MMBtu in December to $3.21 in January – gas prices dropped, with Q1 2024 monthly averages at $2.05/MMBtu, below Q4’s average of $2.19. January’s spike was attributable to increased demand during winter storm Gerri.

Total revenue neutrality uplift (RNU) decreased in January but trended upward through the quarter. SPP reached the second-highest winter peak load, and record load for January, during winter storm Gerri with 46,712 MW on Jan. 16, 2024. This was only 455 MW below the all-time winter peak set during winter storm Elliot.

The top contributors to real-time generation mix in the Integrated Marketplace in Q1 were wind (41.81%), coal (23.28%), gas (23.12%), nuclear (6.24%) and hydro (2.65%)

 

The Markets and Operations Policy Committee (MOPC) met for its quarterly meeting April 16-17. They approved a consent agenda of 21 items and 26 revision requests (RR) and had an overall average consensus of 96.62%.

The primary discussion items were Order 2222, a review of winter storm Gerri, an update on the summer/winter planning reserve margin (PRM) discussions, the proposed fuel assurance policy, and generator interconnection (GI) and Integrated Transmission Plan (ITP) updates.

The group also approved the Consolidated Planning Process Task Force’s (CPPTF) Entry Fee Framework , encompassing components, structure, technical alignment, customer readiness, and standing up the first entry fee.

The committee approved the package of revision requests (RRs 600.1-600.16) as presented by implementing the board-approved terms and conditions for RTO membership and expansion in the Western Interconnection. Revisions were also approved to the 2024 ITP Scope.

Additional items approved by the committee included: RR612 Multi-Day Economic Commitment; RR605 Resource Availability; RR616 Outage Policy; and GI Seasonal Limited Operations.

The MOPC will next meet July 16-17 in Tulsa, OK. 

To get involved in SPP's stakeholder-driven process, find meeting registration, contact information and materials at the stakeholder group links below:

MOPC | DSC | ESWG | MWG | ORWG | 2222
PCWG | RARTF | RTWG | SAWG | TOSPTF | TWG

On Friday, March 29, SPP filed the Markets+ tariff with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), following approval by the Markets+ Participant Executive Committee (MPEC), Markets+ Independent Panel (MIP) and the SPP board of directors (BOD). Post-tariff filing activity will include developing Markets+ protocols and the beginning of phase two of the initiative, including a funding proposal, key contractual terms needed to mitigate risk exposure and funding agreements from phase two Markets+ participants. The Markets+ launch is planned for the second quarter of 2027.

SPP received a letter Friday, April 12, from 26 western entities indicating their support for continued development of Markets+. The letter was signed by organizations from the Pacific Northwest, Desert Southwest, and Mountain West regions, which represent approximately 57 GW of peak demand across ten states and one Canadian province in the Western Interconnection. The group highlighted preferred aspects of the proposed market’s unique design and governance structure.

The MPEC met April 30 to discuss updates from Markets+ working groups as they move toward phase two. They approved the Markets+ Interim Governance Task Force moving forward to develop consistent language for attendance and proxies across all Markets+ working groups. They also received an update on the results of an external market monitor request survey and approved further exploration of the engagement of an external market advisor.

The MPEC will next meet August 13-14 in Denver. 

IMIP | MPEC | MDWG | MSWG | MTWG | MORWG
MGHGTF | MCRTF | MRATF | MRTF

Learn more about SPP's Western Services. Find meeting registration, contact information and materials at the additional stakeholder group links below:

WMEC | WMWG | WREC | WRWG
ECCWG | New Member | QOO

Consolidated Planning Process Task Force (CPPTF)

The CPPTF held regular monthly meetings during Q1 and added one ad-hoc meetingto keep initiatives moving forward since the last update. Collaborative efforts by the CPPTF and the Cost Allocation Working Group (CAWG), led to the approval of the Entry Fee Framework document and policy direction at Q1 2024 quarterly meetings, paving for tariff revision requests. The Entry Fee Framework was presented to and received endorsements from the Transmission Working Group (TWG), Economic Studies Working Group (ESWG) and CAWG before it was presented to the MOPC in April. MOPC approved the document, and the team is preparing to develop the CPP tariff revision request language to incorporate CPP into governing documents. 

The document encompasses the payment schedule and distribution mechanisms, and the initial establishment and subsequent updates of an entry fee up to a GI commitment point. The Entry Fee Framework document also provides guidance for a CPP transition study to establish the first entry fee.  

The CPPTF will meet next on June 13 remotely. During the upcoming meeting, the team will continue working to build stakeholder buy-in and support on future and siting plans to be used in the CPP transition study scope and on further development of the entry fee estimation and maintenance. There will also be a focus on understanding and evaluating how the recently released FERC Order 1920 for Transmission Planning and Cost Allocation will impact CPP.  

Future Grid Strategy Advisory Group (FGSAG)

The FGSAG is coordinating with working groups for the implementation of prioritized recommendations associated with its 2023 report to prepare for grid changes in the coming 10-15 years. The group is currently focused on developing an addendum to the 2023 report to address Artificial Intelligence (AI), Grid Enhancing Technologies (GETs), Load of the Future, and advancement of the FERNs (Future Energy and Resource Needs) study.

Leadership & Oversight

The Regional State Committee (RSC) and Board of Directors and Members Committee (BOD/MC) held their business meetings and quarterly joint stakeholder briefing May 6-7.

The RSC approved changes to RR607 Safe Harbor Provisions. They also approved the seven policy recommendations from the CAWG, related to the Consolidated Planning Process adopted by the CAWG at the March and April 2024 meetings. They approved RR605 Resource Availability with the SPP Staff addition of previously approved RR549. They also approved RR616 Improved Outage Policy.

The RSC endorsed the Price Formation policy as endorsed by the REAL Team and Market Working Group (MWG).

They approved RR600.10 Congestion Hedging Over West DC Ties and endorsed RR600.15 Attachment AA changes as amended by the MOPC, as implementing the RSC/board-approved terms and conditions for RTO membership and expansion in the Western Interconnection.

The RSC established an RTO West working group to determine any necessary changes to RSC governing documents due to the western expansion. The committee will be consensus based and will be chaired by Commissioner Pat O’Connell (NM PRC).

They also approved Sarah Martz as the new chair of the Regional Allocation Review Task Force (RARTF).

The BOD approved the following RRs as approved by the RSC: RR607 Safe Harbor Provision Changes; RR605 Resource Availability; RR616 – Improved Outage Policy; and the package of revision requests (RRs 600.1-600.16) as presented by implementing the board-approved terms and conditions for RTO membership and expansion in the Western Interconnection.

During the Finance Committee (FC) Report, they discussed Markets+ phase two funding and the FERC rate cap. The FC will have a special meeting in June to continue its discussion of the FERC rate cap, including an increase to the rate cap in 2025.

Minutes from the meetings of the RSC and BOD can be found on spp.org. The RSC and BOD/MC will next meet August 5 in St. Louis, MO. Register for the RSC and Quarterly Joint Stakeholder Briefing meeting here, and the BOD/MC meeting here.

As a special addition to the RSC and BOD/MC Meetings, SPP also recognized the 20th anniversary of the formation of the RSC this year! Established in April 2004, the SPP RSC has played a pivotal role in the ongoing modernization of the bulk electric transmission system across the central United States. The group’s ongoing work is a hallmark of SPP’s collaborative approach to coordinating electric reliability across a multi-state territory and among stakeholders with diverse interests, challenges and opportunities.

The Strategic Planning Committee (SPC) received updates on several Aspire 2026 strategic opportunities and enabling capabilities.  The committee discussed the impacts of AI on SPP and considered how AI might be leveraged to  AI to advance SPP’s mission by automating and standardizing manual procedures, managing increasing energy demand, and gaining a competitive advantage over other ISO/RTOs. It was noted for the SPC that a long-term AI strategy is being developed, including an internal AI strike team drafting policies and guidelines for AI use.

The SPC also discussed the new Load Forecasting Task Force (LFTF). The LFTF was created to help address concerns about under-forecasting compared to actual load trends, and a gap between projected load growth and expected peak loads driven by new load types like microgrids, market storage resources, data centers, and demand response.

They also received an update on GETs, focusing on their applications, benefits, and challenges, as well as an eventual proposal from staff regarding an approach for developing additional GET-related policies.

 

 BOD/MC RSC | CAWGCGC Finance | HRC | Oversight | SPC 

Adaptive Governance

SPP identified “Adaptive Governance” as an enabling capability in its Aspire 2026 Strategic Plan. SPP’s Corporate Governance Committee (CGC) has conducted ongoing workshops facilitated by Strategic Offsites Group (SOG) to further develop the capability. Recent discussion topics include working group composition, nomination and appointment processes, and the MOPC voting structure. The CGC will continue its work on the Adaptive Governance enabling capability during its virtual business meeting on August 15, 2024.

Stewardship & Value

As of March 31, SPP’s gross revenue requirement (GRR) of $212.5 million is currently 2% under the GRR budget of $216.9 million. As of March 2024, SPP’s forecast net revenue requirement (NRR) for 2023 was projected to be $184.0 million, compared to a budget of $192.2 million.

SPP's 2023 Member Value Statement found that SPP provided $3.621 billion in savings and benefits to its members with a 20 to 1 benefit to cost ratio when compared to the cost of membership in the SPP RTO. Members can also use a worksheet to help estimate a portion of the unique value each of their organizations receive from SPP.

The newly released 2023 SPP Annual Report highlights the year’s accomplishments, challenges and milestones while celebrating the dedicated work of our staff and stakeholders. Read how we maintained operational excellence, provided $3.6 billion in value to our members, and took steps to assess and modernize our resource adequacy approach.

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