By William Opalka
The RTO is seeking stakeholder comments on federal, state and local statutes and regulations that could require new transmission.
It is the first of an eight-step process outlined to the Planning Advisory Committee on Wednesday that could result in a transmission study and a competitive procurement. Comments should be emailed to PublicPolicy@iso-ne.com.
The New England States Committee on Electricity (NESCOE) has until April 1 to identify federal and state policy requirements. The RTO also can identify such requirements, along with local (municipal and county) requirements. Stakeholders’ responses to NESCOE will be due 15 days afterward.
If transmission needs are identified as a result of the process, the RTO will provide a draft scope for a public policy transmission study.
Current rules call for ISO-NE to provide a draft scope for the study by June 1, although it is seeking a Tariff change to push the date back to Sept. 1.
If the RTO decides to seek a transmission upgrade, it will invite qualified transmission project sponsors to submit proposals. After evaluating the proposals and PAC input, the RTO will narrow the “stage one” proposals to finalists eligible to submit more detailed “stage two” proposals, one of which will be selected as the preferred solution.
ISO-NE will monitor milestones until the project is completed and in service.
EPA’s Clean Power Plan, which was expected to result in transmission to connect renewable generation with load, is in jeopardy under the Trump administration. But New England states are expected to continue their efforts to decarbonize through power purchase agreements and potentially tighter emission caps under the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative — initiatives that could require transmission investments. (See New England to Charge Ahead on Clean Energy Makeover in 2017.)