Eversource and National Grid on July 27 said that ISO New England (ISO-NE) has selected the companies’ Ready Path Solution project as the cost-effective solution to maintain grid reliability following the retirement of the Mystic generating station in 2024.
As noted in a July 28 “ISO Newswire” post, ISO-NE, in a July 27 memo to stakeholders, announced that the station will retire on June 1, 2024. ISO-NE noted that that announcement came after it reviewed the retirement of the plant’s two remaining units for fuel and transmission security and determined that the region’s reliability needs will be met by that time.
ISO-NE said that it will discuss those findings of the reliability reviews with stakeholders at the NEPOOL Reliability Committee in August.
ISO-NE also noted that it had previously retained the two Mystic units for fuel security after Exelon sought to retire the plant ahead of the 13th Forward Capacity Auction, which was held in February 2019 for the 2022-2023 capacity year.
ISO-NE said that it filed market enhancements, known as the Energy-Security Improvements (ESI) with FERC in April, and recently selected a project — the Ready Path Solution — to solve the transmission issues caused by the plant’s retirement. In an April 16 ISO Newswire post, ISO-NE said that it asks FERC to respond to its filing by Nov. 1, and proposes that the ESI take effect on June 1, 2024.
In a July 24 ISO Newswire post, ISO-NE noted that it issued in late December 2019 a request for proposals (RFP) under FERC’s Order 1000, and posted the final report on phase one of the RFP solicitation on July 17. Eight different developers submitted 36 proposals, ranging from $49m to $745m, as part of the first phase of the competitive solicitation, ISO-NE said.
Eversource and National Grid said in their statement that their project — which has an installed cost of $49m — will enable the timely closing of the Mystic facility in 2024, as well as meet the reliability needs of the region while installing a cost-effective solution that would have a minimal community or environmental impact.
The project will be built entirely within the existing National Grid and Eversource facilities, the companies said, noting that construction would include installing new equipment at Eversource’s existing North Cambridge substation, as well as National Grid’s Tewksbury, Amesbury, and Haverhill substations.
“Though the selection of the Ready Path project may have disappointed other transmission developers, the ISO’s responsibility to New England electricity customers is to select a project that ensures reliability, is timely, and is cost-effective,” Robert Ethier, ISO-NE vice president of System Planning, said in the July 24 ISO Newswire post. “The project accomplishes these goals.”
ISO-NE said in that ISO Newswire post that it will begin working with National Grid and Eversource on a solutions study, as per the rules of its tariff.