Task Force Charter Defines Fuel Security Terms


A draft charter for the new Fuel Security Senior Task Force was presented for a first read to the Markets & Reliability Committee Thursday, May 30.

The Committee endorsed a problem statement and issue charge March 21 that expanded the scope of work on fuel security to include energy and resource security. The charter presented Thursday further defined those three concepts:

  • Fuel security – The availability of fuel, both on-site and assessed from delivery systems, required for a generating unit to be able to follow PJM dispatch signals or operating instructions.
  • Resource security – Availability of a set of resources with the same fuel type that share common vulnerabilities.
  • Energy security – The solution being addressed, which may include a combination of system attributes, fuel and resources that can be achieved through existing, modified or new mechanisms. “Resource” can include not only generators, but programs that reduce electricity demand, such as demand response and load shaving.

For the first few months, the task force will focus on education, said facilitator Becky Carroll, director – Member Relations. In its first three meetings, the group has engaged with representatives of NERC, MISO and ISO-NE.

The first report from the task force is due to be presented to the Markets & Reliability Committee Sept. 26, when the task force is expected to recommend whether market or operational changes are needed to ensure current or future fuel/resource/energy security.

At that time, the Markets & Reliability Committee will be asked to set a deadline for the remainder of the task force’s work.

The exploration of what it means to be fuel-secure is part of PJM’s ongoing initiative to improve grid resilience. Resilience itself is the ability of grid operators to plan for, operate through and recover from large-scale disruptions not addressed by existing reliability standards.

PJM released a Fuel Security Study in November 2018 that stress-tested the grid using more than 300 scenarios. The findings show that the system can withstand an extended period of stress while remaining reliable and fuel secure. There were combinations of extreme conditions under which the system could be subject to disruptions. While there is no imminent threat to the system, the findings of the study underscore the importance of PJM exploring proactive measures to value fuel security, according to the problem statement. PJM believes that this goal is best accomplished through the competitive wholesale markets.