Arizona Corporation Commission Rejects Utilities' Integrated Resource Plans

LCG, March 22, 2018--The Arizona Corporation Commission last week rejected the Integrated Resource Plans (IRPs) filed by Tucson Electric Power Co. (TEP), sister utility UniSource Energy Services (UNS) and Arizona Public Service Co. (APS) and has ordered them to develop plans that reduce their dependence upon natural gas and new, gas-fired power plants. The Commission prefers greater reliance on renewable energy and storage.

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Get a good picture of ERCOT in LCG’s newly released 2018 ERCOT Outlook

LCG, March 21, 2018 --Texas continues to experience an unprecedented transformation in its energy industry. The state saw record wind energy production in 2017 and will continue to see wind growth through 2018. Large transmission projects and upgrades have taken place. New import and export capabilities are on the horizon, such as through the integration of Lubbock Power & Light and the possible Southern Cross transmission project.

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Industry News

ERCOT Expects Record-breaking Peak Demand this Summer

LCG, March 2, 2018--The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) yesterday released its final Seasonal Assessment of Resource Adequacy (SARA) report for the upcoming spring season (March - May) and its preliminary assessment for the summer season (June - September). ERCOT, the grid operator for most of Texas, is predicting record-breaking peak usage this summer driven by the strong Texas economy. The combination of record-breaking peak usage and the recent retirement of older electric generating units is expected to result in tight operating reserves.

ERCOT's President and CEO stated, "The ERCOT market has experienced a series of new peak demand records over the last few years as Texas' economy continues to grow at record pace. We expect high peak demand will continue this summer."

ERCOT also anticipates voluntary load reductions and an increase in power sold in the market by industrial facilities in response to higher power prices during peak demand.

Total resource capacity for this summer is expected by ERCOT to be 77,658 MW. The preliminary summer SARA report includes a 72,974 MW summer peak load forecast based on normal weather conditions for 2002-2016. This forecast is higher than the all-time summer peak demand record of 71,110 MW set on August 11, 2016. Almost 3,800 MW in new generation resources began operating in 2017, and more than 14,000 MW of resources are planned to be in service by 2020.

The final summer SARA report will be released in May and will reflect the expected summer weather conditions.

In its final spring SARA report, ERCOT anticipates there will be adequate generation to satisfy system-wide demand under a range of extreme system conditions. The adjusted spring peak load forecast is expected 59,477 MW.

The SARA report is based on an assessment of generation availability and expected peak demand conditions at the time it was prepared. The assessment takes into account expected generation outages that typically occur during each season for routine maintenance, as well as a range of generation outage scenarios and weather conditions that could affect seasonal demand.
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