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Agency: State’s electric grid ready for winter demand

Posted 11/11/21

RENSSELAER — The New York Independent System Operator has issued a report that electricity supplies in New York are expected to be sufficient to meet forecasted peak winter demand, with a total of …

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Agency: State’s electric grid ready for winter demand

Posted

RENSSELAER — The New York Independent System Operator has issued a report that electricity supplies in New York are expected to be sufficient to meet forecasted peak winter demand, with a total of 42,415 megawatts of power resources available.

“Recognizing the unique challenges that can accompany the upcoming winter season, NYISO operations staff has taken additional precautions and conducted extensive additional outreach to generators to maintain reliable bulk system operations for all New Yorkers,” said Rich Dewey, president and chief executive officer of NYISO.

“Despite the recent increase in commodity fuel prices, our markets will continue to help us meet this winter’s demand reliably at the least cost possible,” Dewey added.

“The state’s grid is well-equipped to handle forecasted winter demand,” added Wes Yeomans, vice president of operations for NYISO. “The NYISO operates the grid to meet reliability rules that are among the strictest in the nation and are designed to ensure adequate supply.”

Projected winter demand

The NYISO forecasts that peak demand for winter 2021-22 will reach 24,025 MW. The forecast represents an increase of 1,483 MW over last winter’s peak of 22,542 MW on Dec. 16, 2020, but is 0.7% below the 10-year average winter peak of 24,203 MW.

The NYISO’s extreme winter weather scenario analyses evaluate numerous types of conditions and show that peak demand could increase to as much as 26,230 MW.

New York’s all-time winter peak was set in January 2014, during multi-day polar vortex conditions that pushed demand to 25,738 MW.

While the polar vortex of 2014 did not cause any bulk power system reliability issues, the NYISO made changes to its market designs to provide stronger incentives for generators to secure fuel availability and enhance preparations for winter peak demand needs, officials said.

At the same time, the NYISO took steps to improve situational awareness of natural gas system conditions and enhance procedures for monitoring generator fuel inventories.

This combination of actions proved valuable, officials with NYISO said, in reliably meeting the state’s energy demands throughout the more recent severe cold snaps experienced in the winters of 2017-18 and 2018-19.

Winter 2021-22
Preparedness

Part of the NYISO’s annual winter preparedness procedures includes detailed surveys sent to generators across the state. Those surveys help our operators understand specific challenges during each season.

Key takeaways for the 2021-22 winter season, the agency said, include:

Operations is monitoring regional fuel supplies, including oil inventories, as indications are these could be limited in supply this winter;

Seasonal and weekly fuel surveys indicate oil and dual-fuel capability generation have sufficient start-of-winter oil inventories (but lower than past years’ inventories);

Operations has surveyed most generating stations to discuss past winter operations, preparations for the upcoming winter, including last dual-fuel operation, cold-weather preventative maintenance, fuel procurement arrangements, and fuel switching capabilities;

Operations coordination of transmission and generation maintenance outages helps mitigate the reliability impact of such outages during extreme cold weather periods; and

The NYISO has performed a “gas-electric critical infrastructure survey effort” consisting of: Outreach/coordination with local gas distribution companies and pipelines to identify critical electric circuits for the gas system; a review of electric load shedding processes with the New York Utilities; and a survey of NYISO Demand Response participants to identify “critical interdependent sub-sector loads.”

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