Another story in Inside Lines’ Exploring PJM series.
One of the most important aspects of PJM is that its customers are the members who help govern it.
PJM provides services without profit to members who share the benefits of power pooling (access to electricity resources across a broad geographical region) and competitive wholesale electricity markets.
PJM members have a vote in the PJM stakeholder process to work through issues related to PJM operations, markets, planning and other matters.
Members represent different five different types of participants in the electric industry:
- Full members can participate in the competitive wholesale electricity market and vote in the Members Committee in one of five sectors. Voting rights and participation in the competitive wholesale electricity market are confined to full members. The membership criteria are outlined in the PJM Operating Agreement.
- Affiliate members are in the same family of companies as a full member; they have voting rights at senior task force and lower-level standing committee meetings but not the in senior standing committees.
- Ex officio state offices of consumer advocate representatives have voting rights on the Members Committee, as part of the End-Use Customer sector.
- Emergency Customer Load Reduction Program members are granted membership for purposes of participating in the Emergency Customer Load Reduction Program.
- Associate members have special membership status and do not participate in PJM’s markets. They do not have voting rights in any stakeholder activities, committees or task forces.
The five sectors of PJM membership:
- Members who own or lease (with rights equivalent to ownership) transmission facilities in PJM’s footprint and have signed the PJM Transmission Owners Agreement. The agreement provides for the coordinated planning and operation of transmission assets in PJM, as well as transfers some planning and operating responsibilities to PJM and establishes regional transmission service as provided for in the PJM tariff.
- These companies are what most consumers think of as “the electric company” – ComEd, PP&L, PECO, PSE&G, etc.
- Members who own or lease (with rights equivalent to ownership) a capacity or energy-only resource within the PJM footprint. For a planned generation resource owner to qualify in the Generation Owner sector, the resource must have cleared a capacity auction.
- These are businesses that generate electricity, including subsidiaries such as Exelon Generation (Exelon is the parent company of ComEd and PECO) and independent power producers such as Calpine.
- Members who own or lease (with rights equivalent to ownership) electric distribution facilities used to provide electric distribution service to electric load within PJM’s footprint.
- These are municipal agencies, small towns, boroughs and regional electric or utility cooperatives.
- Members who are retail end-users of electricity within the PJM footprint.
- These are consumer advocates for states and municipalities, attorneys general and utility boards.
- Members who engage in buying, selling or transmitting electric energy, capacity, ancillary services, financial transmission rights or other services in or through PJM and do not qualify for the other sectors.