Positive Outlook for MISO South

The results from MISO’s 2015 Organization of MISO States (OMS) reserve margin survey reveal that the MISO footprint has seen significant improvements, projecting a positive outlook for the South Region.

The 2015 survey results show a 1.7 gigawatt (GW) surplus for 2016 for all of MISO, primarily due to an increase in resources committed to serving MISO load and a decrease in load forecasts. The 2014 OMS-MISO Survey had projected that the region faced a potential 2.3 GW shortfall starting in 2016.

The improved forecast is a combination of action taken by MISO load-serving entities and state regulators to address potential capacity shortfalls and a decrease in load forecasts. The remainder of the change was due to a decrease in the reserve margin requirement. Moreover, load diversity within MISO’s footprint reduces the amount of capacity required to meet local requirements by recognizing that different areas in MISO peak at different times. This allows cost savings in deferred generation investment due to lower footprint-wide reserve margins and represents $1.6 billion of value for electricity providers and customers across the MISO footprint.

The 2015 survey indicates that part of the MISO region will fall below reserve margin requirements in 2016; however, these areas will be able to import needed capacity from neighboring zones to meet these requirements; one of the many benefits of membership in a regional transmission organization. Additionally, the survey forecasts the potential for resources to fall below the regional reserve margin requirement beginning in 2020.  Lowered reserve margins present a new operating reality for MISO members, one that could include the increased likelihood of relying on emergency operation procedures, such as behind the meter generation and demand response.

“The results are encouraging.  It shows that action is being taken to address an issue of concern for the MISO region,” said Clair Moeller, MISO executive vice president of transmission and technology.  “However, it is important to note that more work remains to be done.  While the near-term picture has improved, the longer-term forecast requires continued vigilance to ensure there are adequate resources.”

Specific details regarding the survey will be discussed at the July 9, 2015; Supply Adequacy Working and the presentation can be found at the following link OMS-MISO 2015 Survey

The OMS, in collaboration with stakeholders, and MISO staff conduct this annual survey to obtain a snapshot of the region’s long-term resource adequacy at forecasted capacity levels over a ten-year period. This survey is an important tool for assessing whether the broad MISO region and its nine local resource zones will have sufficient resources to meet peak demand and reliability standards in 2016 and beyond. Because load-serving entities, with appropriate oversight by state regulators, are responsible for ensuring resource adequacy in MISO, MISO and the OMS developed the survey as a way to provide transparency around long-term resource needs.


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