California electric agencies have plan to deal with Aliso Canyon impact

The California Independent System Operator (ISO) Board of Governors has approved a plan to improve gas-electric coordination and reduce the risk of electric delivery issued associated with the moratorium imposed on the Aliso Canyon gas storage facility.

The ISO is participating in an inter-agency task force with California Energy Commission (CEC), California Public Utility Commission (CPUC), Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP), and Southern California Gas (SoCalGas) to assess the risks of the limited operability of Aliso Canyon introduces to the gas and electric markets.

On April 2016, the inter-agency task force published its Technical Assessment Report which identified four major risks to the SoCalGas operating region beginning summer 2016.

The revised proposal includes improvements to better align ISO markets with current conditions on the gas system and to enable power plant operators to better manage their gas burns to avoid gas balancing penalties.

The ISO also proposes to reserve transmission capacity if necessary to take into consideration gas or electric system conditions, which will help ensure lines have flexible capacity margins to respond to real-time changes.

The changes can be quickly implemented and should help in the short term to deal with expected heavy grid use during the upcoming summer months. But the ISO reported that longer term market design changes, if any, should be considered.

In October 2015, the Aliso Canyon natural gas storage facility in Southern California experienced a large gas leak significantly affecting gas markets and many of the people that live and work in the area. The facility is a key part of the gas system, serving gas customers in the Los Angeles Basin, including gas-fired power plants.

About Wayne Barber 4201 Articles
Wayne Barber, Chief Analyst for the GenerationHub, has been covering power generation, energy and natural resources issues at national publications for more than 20 years. Prior to joining PennWell he was editor of Generation Markets Week at SNL Financial for nine years. He has also worked as a business journalist at both McGraw-Hill and Financial Times Energy. Wayne also worked as a newspaper reporter for several years. During his career has visited nuclear reactors and coal mines as well as coal and natural gas power plants. Wayne can be reached at wayneb@pennwell.com.