PJM, stakeholders discuss new DER forum

PJM and stakeholders have been examining the topic of distributed energy resources in special sessions of the Market Implementation Committee since the beginning of 2017

On Sept. 18, PJM introduced language to establish a longer-term stakeholder group dedicated to DER and examining how it interacts with PJM and vice versa.

The new group will examine DER issues beyond the scope of the current MIC and initiate discussion of its own related issues (such as how PJM and electric distribution companies coordinate the operation of DER).

PJM presented several options and led the discussion on what form the new group would take – task force, senior task force or subcommittee. The meetings of the new group will be a place for all DER issues to reside as PJM and stakeholders develop a high-level plan and series of deliverables. There will be further discussion at the Sept. 28 Markets and Reliability Committee meeting.

PJM assured stakeholders it would reach those who have an interest in different aspects of DER beyond the more narrow market-related focus of MIC. Some of the issues the new group will address will impact not just markets, but also operations and planning. The issues will also need to be vetted by several standing committees.

The current problem statement/issue charge for the special MIC is very narrow in focus, limited to market participation rules for resources than can inject onto the distribution system through a customer’s load meter, said Scott Baker, senior analyst, Business Solutions – Applied Solutions, who is the special committee’s chair.

The MIC found a greater scope of DER issues, including the visibility on non-wholesale resources and coordination with microgrids and with electric distribution companies. This provided the impetus for the new group.

PJM also noted that there is still a pending Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on DER at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission; PJM responded to the NOPR in February (The MIC-DER has discussed the NOPR at length). If FERC issues the rule, there will only be further discussion.

PJM also began education on what energy market settlements might look like in the future for DER by comparing how wholesale generation, non-wholesale generation and demand response all affect energy settlements for load. PJM staff and stakeholders hope to have an energy and ancillary services package ready to approve by a higher-level committee by the end of 2017.