PJM and Gas Pipelines Coordinate to Fuel Electric Power Plants

PJM Interconnection and several large interstate natural gas pipelines that provide fuel for electric generators in the PJM footprint, which includes Pennsylvania, have signed a memorandum of understanding spelling out coordination efforts to promote reliability. They have agreed to work more closely with each other to improve operational planning and address growing interdependence between the electric and natural gas industries.

“This agreement sets the stage for greater coordination between electric generators and the natural gas pipeline industry” said Mike Kormos, PJM Chief Operations Officer.  “As electricity-generating facilities increasingly turn to natural gas, it is important that we all communicate clearly to assure reliable service.”

PJM Interconnection – a regional transmission organization that coordinates wholesale electricity for 13 states and the District of Columbia – and several large natural gas pipelines that provide fuel for electric power generators in the PJM footprint have agreed to work more closely with each other to improve operational planning and address growing interdependence between the electric and natural gas industries.  “These individual pipeline companies and PJM are to be commended for taking the initiative to create a process to promote greater transparency and shared knowledge. Continued dialogue will result in more informed decisions by the PJM market participants that operate and rely upon gas-fired electric generators,” said Don Santa, president and CEO of the Interstate Natural Gas Association of America. The intent of the agreement is to provide a better understanding of the needs of gas-fired generators and work toward providing reliable and flexible solutions that promote adequate natural gas pipeline capacity.

In addition to the PJM Interconnection, parties to the coordination effort include Dominion Cove Point LNG, LP; Dominion Transmission, Inc.; Columbia Gas Transmission LLC; National Fuel Gas Supply Corporation; Natural Gas Pipeline Company of America; Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company, L.L.C.; Texas Eastern Transmission, LP; Texas Gas Transmission, LLC; and Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Company, LLC. The parties are also in consultation with the Independent Market Monitor, Monitoring Analytics. As permitted by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Order No. 787, PJM and the participating pipeline companies plan to share certain non-public information to promote reliable service and improved operational planning for both the electric grid and the interstate natural gas pipeline network. The initial effort will continue through June 2016, and will be evaluated for next steps. The parties expect to communicate their progress and any insights that emerge from this continued dialogue to the FERC and other interested stakeholders.

Contact attorney Jeffrey A. Franklin at Prince Law Offices, P.C. for more information or assistance with electric and gas matters.

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