FERC grants waiver to gas-fired Oregon Clean Energy project

natural gas power plant april elp

The members of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on May 10 approved an April 26 application Oregon Clean Energy for a one-time, limited waiver of the competitive entry exemption deadline set forth in PJM Interconnection's Open Access Transmission Tariff.

OCE also requested expedited action on its petition by May 10. "For the reasons discussed below, we grant OCE’s request for waiver," said the FERC order.

PJM secures capacity commitments under the reliability pricing model through a base residual auction, held three years before a delivery year. PJM’s minimum offer price rule imposes minimum offer prices for new generation capacity resources participating in the base residual auction. A capacity market seller can seek to qualify for a competitive entry exemption to the minimum offer price rule for an upcoming base residual auction.

If a capacity market seller seeks a competitive entry exemption, it must fulfill the substantive criteria for a competitive entry exemption set forth in the tariff. Specifically, the capacity market seller must submit its exemption request, along with supporting data and documentation, to the market monitoring unit and PJM’s Office of Interconnection at least 135 days before the commencement of the offer period for the base residual auction in which the capacity market seller seeks to submit its offer. For the May 11, 2016, base residual auction, the deadline for requesting a competitive entry exemption was Dec. 28, 2015.

OCE is undertaking a project to increase the capacity of an existing gas-fired combined cycle facility, identified as the Oregon Energy Center, from its current nameplate capacity of 799 MW to a total capacity of 845 MW – an addition of 46 MW. The 799 MW of capacity for the existing facility has already been offered into and cleared a prior auction. The additional 46 MW have not previously been offered into a reliability pricing model auction.

OCE anticipates the project will commence commercial operation by June 2017.

OCE requested waiver of the Dec. 28, 2015, deadline to request a competitive entry exemption for its project for the 2016 base residual auction for the 2019/2020 delivery year. OCE said expedited action was warranted to provide the MMU and PJM’s Office of Interconnection time for consideration of its competitive entry exemption request in advance of the 2016 base residual auction.

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