Cloverland protests life support SSR deal for White Pine unit in Michigan

Cloverland Electric Cooperative on Jan. 19 protested at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission the System Support Resource Agreement between White Pine Electric Power LLC and the Midcontinent ISO for the White Pine Unit 2 in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.

Cloverland also objected to the proposed MISO allocation of the White Pine Unit 2 SSR costs under the proposed Rate Schedule 43I under the MISO Open Access Transmission, Energy and Operating Reserve Markets Tariff. Both requests were filed by MISO on Dec. 30, 2014.

“The requested White Pine Unit 2 cost compensation is not reasonable,” Cloverland said. “The Commission approved the cost compensation and allocation of the 20 MW White Pines Unit 1 effective for one year from April 16, 2014. MISO requests cost compensation for the similar gas-fired 20-MW Unit 2 to go into effect for three and a half months, from January 1, 2015 to April 15, 2015. Even though the fixed rate cost recovery sought for White Pine Unit 2 is only for going-forward costs for three and a half months, the imputed monthly costs are 125% of the monthly costs of Unit 1. In addition, the requested costs are undocumented, unverified, at times merely stated, and inaccurately calculated, and so deficient and likely to be unjust and unreasonable. Thus, the SSR Agreement should be suspended and set for hearing.”

Cloverland added: “The combined impact of the unjust and unreasonable cost compensation and allocation to Cloverland is significant. White Pine Unit 2 is located in the west of the Upper Peninsula, farther west than even the Presque Isle Power Plant. Cloverland serves around 42,000 customers in the eastern third of the Upper Peninsula, far away from the plant. MISO has not demonstrated any reliability benefit of the White Pine plant to Cloverland, yet allocates 88% of the cost to the [Michigan Upper Peninsula Local Balancing Authority] MIUP LBA, and, given the same MIUP [Load Serving Entity] LSE load ratio shares as in the case of Presque Isle, allocates an estimated 21% of the cost of White Pine Unit 2 to Cloverland.

“The White Pines Units 1 & 2 SSR agreements are likely to stay in effect, in successive one-year agreements, until American Transmission Company completes Transmission Project 8090 in 2020. Thus, Cloverland, which receives no documented benefit from White Pine 1 and 2, can be expected to pay $2.2 million a year in addition to the MISO-proposed $21.9 million a year for Presque Isle.”

Presque Isle is a coal-fired plant in the western Upper Peninsula that is also surviving on SSR agreements. Michigan government officials and various companies recently worked out a deal to shut Presque Isle in 2020 once other means are developed to provide local grid support.

About Barry Cassell 20414 Articles
Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy’s Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication’s editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University.