Thursday, February 21, 2019

MISO Gas Study Finds Minuscule Pipeline Risks

By Amanda Durish Cook

MISO’s reliability is unlikely to be hampered by gas supply issues, as there is only a very small chance a large natural gas pipeline serving the grid could be affected by fuel delivery issues, according to a recent study from the RTO.

MISO said that at any given time it faces up to a 2% probability of a fuel disruption event in any given 1-mile section of an interstate pipeline. Of 35 MISO-area pipelines that have experienced events, about 80% have a 0.2% or less chance of an event occurring in any 1-mile section.


Vector Pipeline | DTE Energy

Gas generation outages stemming from fuel delivery issues would be 915 MW at most in any operating hour, the RTO said. It also found fuel delivery disruptions reported by gas generators are not usually related to unplanned pipeline outages.

The RTO will not publicly release detailed study findings because they identify specific pipelines.

MISO performed the in-depth assessment to determine whether its previous examinations of pipeline infrastructure failed to foresee additional risks because of physical disruption, but it said the study didn’t produce any new concerns.

“Over the past four years, MISO has not found any significant reliability impacts in its assessment of gas-related contingencies. … MISO has found little historical evidence, nor additional contingency risks that are greater than what is currently being evaluated,” the RTO said.

Earlier this year, MISO pushed back on a NERC report that said two areas in the RTO would “experience transmission challenges during an extreme event” involving a disruption of natural gas delivery. The RTO said the study failed to account for gas-fired generators’ access to alternative fuel sources. (See MISO Rebuts NERC Findings on Gas Risks.)