Duke Energy Considering Southeast Energy Exchange Market with Other Utilities
July 17, 2020
Duke Energy is in discussions with Dominion, Southern Company, and other power companies about creating a centralized, regional energy exchange for the Southeast. While no commitments have been announced, the plan being considered would create a voluntary, centralized, automated intra-hour energy wholesale market. Erin Culbert, Duke Spokesperson, told Utility Dive that participants could buy and sell power close to the time electricity is consumed offering real-time visibility across neighboring electric grids for system operators.
The companies involved are not planning to create a regional transmission organization (RTO) but are proposing something similar to an Energy Imbalance Market (EIM) that would be called the Southeast Energy Exchange Market (SEEM). RTOs are non-profit organizations regulated by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to ensure reliability and optimize supply and demand bids for wholesale electric power. EIMs are voluntary markets that supply and dispatch electricity to balance fluctuations in generation and load among participating markets.
Duke Energy's Vice President for Regulatory Affairs, Kendal Bowman, shared news about the plan in a meeting with members of Governor Roy Cooper's Clean Energy Plan Stakeholder group on Monday, July 13. According to Charlotte Business Journal, he said the benefits could include cost savings for customers, better integration of renewables, and potentially increased reliability.
No formal notice has been made to the North Carolina Utilities Commission (NCUC), but Sam Watson, general counsel for NCUC, told Charlotte Business Journal that notice to the commission may not be necessary if the proposals involved only wholesale energy deals. The NCUC has limited involvement in wholesale power questions, which are the province of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.
Duke Energy says discussions are in the early stages. As plans progress, the energy companies involved would bring in stakeholders for discussion and file with the FERC.
Charlotte Business Journal Article
Duke Energy, Southern Co. and Others in Talks to Establish a Southeast Energy Market | by John Downey | July 14, 2020
NOTE: Requires Subscription
Greentech Media Article
Utilities Propose First Regional Grid-Balancing Market in Southeastern US | by Jeff St. John | July 14, 2020
Energy Dive Article
Duke, Southern Plan Path for Southeast Energy Imbalance Market | by Julia Gheorghiu | July 14, 2020