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New York Issues Offshore Wind Solicitation

LCG, November 9, 2018--The Governor of New York yesterday announced a solicitation for 800 MW or more of new offshore wind projects to supply renewable energy to New York to combat climate change. The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) issued the Request for Proposals (RFP), which is the first key step in New York's plan to install 2,400 MW of offshore wind projects by 2030.

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Xcel Energy to Acquire Mankato Energy Center from Southern Power

LCG, November 8, 2018--Xcel Energy and Southern Power, a subsidiary of Southern Company, earlier this week announced an agreement for Southern Power to sell the Mankato Energy Center to Xcel Energy for $650 million. The completion of the sale, subject to regulatory approval and other closing conditions, is expected to be mid-2019.

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Industry News

ERCOT Forecasts Record-breaking Summer Peak Demand

LCG, May 2, 2018--The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) Monday released its final Seasonal Assessment of Resource Adequacy (SARA) report for this summer season (June - September). ERCOT, the grid operator for most of Texas, continues to predict record-breaking peak usage this summer season.

The report includes a 72,756 MW summer peak load forecast based on expectations for normal weather, and remains unchanged from the forecast used for the preliminary summer SARA report issued March 1. The Texas economy continues to drive demand, and the anticipated peak demand is expected to be over 1,600 MW higher than the all-time peak demand record of 71,110 MW set in August 2016.

The forecast peak demand, combined with recent plant retirements and delays in some planned resources, is expected to result in tight reserves that could trigger the need for ERCOT to deploy such resources as Ancillary Services and contracted Emergency Response Service capacity to maintain sufficient operating reserve levels. ERCOT may also request that Transmission and/or Distribution Service Providers (TDSPs) implement load control measures established through Standard Offer contracts with their customers. There is approximately 2,300 MW of such additional capacity available to ERCOT for addressing reserve deficiency situations.

Total generation resource capacity for the summer season is now estimated at 78,184 MW, which is up by 525 MW relative to the amount reported in the preliminary summer SARA report. The increase is due primarily to the change in status of a mothballed unit (300 MW) from unavailable to available for the summer season, a planned gas-fired resource (226 MW) that is now expected to be available in mid-June, and a formerly unavailable Switchable Generation Resource (54.6 MW) that is planned to be available to the ERCOT grid. The change in total capacity also reflects some minor decreases such as a smaller Private Use Network capacity contribution and the postponement of the projected in-service date for a small planned gas-fired unit to the fall of 2018. The total amount of planned additions for the summer now stands at 728 MW, constituting 345 MW of thermal sources and 383 MW of renewables based on the expected summer peak capacity contributions.

The final summer unit outage forecast of 4,349 MW remains unchanged from the preliminary summer SARA report. ERCOT developed this forecast from outage data for the last three summer seasons.
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