Monday, March 18, 2019

LSE Load Forecast Documents Incomplete, MISO says

By Amanda Durish Cook

CARMEL, Ind. — In an assessment of this year’s load forecast Wednesday, MISO told its load-serving entities they could do more to support their individual forecasts with documentation.

MISO adviser Michael Robinson began the annual load forecast review with an anecdote that Lake Superior was days away from freezing over completely.

“Every 30 or 40 years it typically does this,” Robinson said. “Assuming no forced outages and instantaneous replacement,” it would take one Zamboni 693 years to resurface the lake, he said.

“It hasn’t taken us that long to assess the load forecast, but it has taken us some time,” Robinson joked.

Michael Robinson addresses the RASC. | © RTO Insider

He said that while all of MISO’s 140-plus LSEs submitted demand forecasts, supporting documentation was often incomplete.

This year, MISO posted a template of information to emphasize the kinds of information and documentation it expects.

“Last year when we did this, we weren’t happy with the initial response we got from LSEs and the documentation supporting the coincident peak demands,” Robinson said.

Despite the written expectations, Robinson said LSEs again provided spotty documentation supporting their forecasts. MISO this year conducted a random sampling of 11 LSEs with peak demand under 1 MW and 17 LSEs greater than 1 MW, representing 48.5% of the RTO’s peak demand. It said it found “many instances where information was initially missing.”

“Well over half of our LSEs have given us insufficient information on the first go-round,” Robinson said. “We need to do better next year.”

However, Robinson said once MISO got the requested information, it resulted in only minor revisions to the load forecasts.

MISO this year expects a coincident peak load of nearly 122 GW systemwide and a 135-GW planning reserve margin; the RTO says it has about 172 GW of totaled installed capacity to cover it.

This is the last year MISO will use its historic load forecasting method. For its 2020 Transmission Expansion Plan, the RTO will rely on a blended forecast that will have Purdue University’s State Utility Forecasting Group and consulting firm Applied Energy Group work with 20-year forecasts provided by LSEs. (See “MISO Under New Load Forecasting Method,” MISO Planning Week Briefs: Feb. 12-13, 2019.)

Capacity Auction Nearing

MISO will post final Planning Reserve Auction load forecast data on or about March 18 and plans to hold a conference call on the final data March 20. (See MISO Preliminary PRA Data up Slightly from Early Prediction.)

This year’s capacity auction offer window will open at 12:01 a.m. on March 26 and close at 11:59 p.m. on March 29. Results will be publicly available on April 12.

LMR Registration Steady Despite New Requirements

The number of load-modifying resources registering for this year’s auction is in line with last year, MISO’s Eric Thoms reported. The RTO registered 809 LMRs representing 11.7 GW for the 2019/20 planning year. Traditional behind-the-meter generation (BTMG) totaled 340 resources at 3.6 GW, and demand response totaled 280 resources at 7.3 GW. The total also includes 189 intermittent BTM resources at 913 MW.

According to MISO’s count, 48% of traditional BTMG and DR LMRs have a lead time of fewer than two hours, while about 27% have a lead time of between two and six hours. Slightly less than 25% have a notification requirement of six or more hours.

About 81% of the traditional BTMG and DR reported availability for more than nine months out of the year. This is the first year that LMRs had to provide firmer and more clearly documented commitments regarding their availability before participating in the PRA. In years past, MISO LMRs were only required to be available for dispatch in the summer months. (See MISO LMR Capacity Rules Get FERC Approval.)

During the registration process this year, MISO created a bulk LMR registration template to allow market participants could register several LMRs at once, after the RTO noticed owners of multiple LMRs were experiencing a time-consuming process, Thoms said. Because MISO’s Tariff filing was intended to ensure that LMRs are available as promised, resource owners this year had an extended registration deadline. (See “LMR Registration Confusion,” MISO Preliminary PRA Data up Slightly from Early Prediction.)

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