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MRO Releases Regional Summer Assessment

MRO is releasing its 2022 Regional Summer Assessment (2022 RSA) this month, which will be followed by a webinar on the topic on June 30, 2022. The assessment provides information and awareness to regulators, industry leaders and registered entities, and other key stakeholders on the expected health of the bulk power system within MRO’s regional footprint for the upcoming summer season. This assessment complements NERC’s Summer Assessment (which provides an evaluation of resource and transmission system adequacy necessary to meet projected summer peak demands across all of North America) by taking a more granular look at reliability challenges that present a greater risk within MRO’s regional footprint. MRO also includes historical trends as part of its seasonal assessments.

NERC’s 2022 Summer Reliability Assessment highlights the risks of potential energy shortfalls this summer for Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO), particularly in the North and Central areas of MISO’s footprint, due to insufficient capacity to cover the anticipated summer peak demands. The anticipated shortfalls increase the risk of temporary, controlled load sheds or other operating mitigations such as deployment of load-modifying resources or non-firm imports to meet reserve requirements under normal peak summer conditions.

Above-normal temperatures and continued drought conditions over the western half of the United States will impact the Missouri River and other water sources used by Southwest Power Pool (SPP) for generation and once-through cooling processes. This could lead to reduced output from these resources and require the implementation of emergency procedures to meet peak demand during periods of high generator unavailability because of insufficient cooling water.

Anticipated resource capacity in Saskatchewan will be strained to meet projected peak demand for the summer season. This is primarily the result of a projected increase in load growth from the economy returning to pre-pandemic levels, increased oil and gas development activities, and a revised forecast methodology for anticipating summer peak demands. Saskatchewan Power Corporation (SPC) is seeing tighter reserve margins as available resources approach planning reserve margin levels. SPC projects sufficient operating reserves for normal weather this summer; however, above-average seasonal temperatures and increased forced outages for generation will require external assistance from Alberta, Manitoba, and/or SPP.

The 2022 RSA reflects MRO’s independent assessment of the upcoming summer season to identify challenges and potential risks to the reliable operation of the bulk power system within MRO’s regional footprint. This assessment provides an in-depth evaluation of resources and transmission system adequacy necessary to meet projected summer peak demands in 2022, as well as an analysis of historical performance data to identify trends that could impact system reliability during the summer months. Some of the topics covered during the 2022 RSA webinar will be:

  • A review of 2021 summer transmission events and the impact on the Bulk Electric System (BES)
  • Reliability impacts of historical MRO regional conventional generation forced outage rates
  • Performance of BES transmission lines and outages based on circuit miles
  • MRO historical operations and misoperations of the protection system and the outage causes during summer 2021
  • Resource adequacy analysis and the driving force behind resource shortfalls for summer 2022

Webinar registration information will be provided in early June with the release of the MRO 2022 RSA report.

– Salva Andiappan, Principle Reliability Assessment Engineer