Thursday, January 24, 2019

FERC Denies Bayonne NYISO Tariff Waiver Request

By Michael Kuser

FERC last week denied Bayonne Energy Center in New Jersey a waiver of several NYISO Tariff provisions, which the plant said it needed to enter the ISO’s monthly installed capacity (ICAP) auction in June.

NYISO clusters project developers that have achieved similar milestones into a “class year,” and evaluates the cumulative impacts of all of the projects in a given class year through an interconnection facilities study. The ISO recently adopted process changes authorizing it to bifurcate a class year in order to minimize delays for project developers unaffected by additional upgrade studies, allowing those developers an earlier “exit ramp” from the interconnection process.

Bayonne Energy Center | Direct Energy

Bayonne last month asked FERC permission to waive 11 provisions and add two new natural gas-fired units with approximately 120 MW of summer capacity to its existing 512 MW of capacity in time for the June ICAP auction.

The plant said that its 2017 class year study, originally scheduled for completion in December, was now slated to be completed in April. Bayonne would then be potentially subject to an additional 30-day delay while the ISO determined whether it needed to bifurcate the class year, jeopardizing the ability of the new capacity to participate in the June auction. Bayonne contended that it was not seeking waiver of any substantive requirements, but of the timing of certain requirements to allow for timely participation.

The commission’s May 4 order (ER18-1301) found that, in seeking waiver of 11 Tariff provisions, “Bayonne’s waiver request is not limited in scope,” and that granting the request could possibly harm third parties by delaying the ISO’s completion of the class year 2017 process for other projects. The commission also pointed out that “it is unclear whether Bayonne will even need waiver of these provisions given that it is not clear yet that whether class year 2017 will bifurcate.”

“We also note that Bayonne assumes, without support, that both NYISO and its Market Monitoring Unit can expedite their processes if the commission grants the waiver request,” the commission said. “In this way, it is unclear whether granting the waiver request would even provide Bayonne the relief it seeks.”