VALLEY FORGE, Pa., March 31, 2003 -- PJM Interconnection has released its assessment of this summer's power supply. It expects to have sufficient generating capacity to meet consumers' forecasted peak usage.
For the entire area covered by the PJM regional transmission organization (RTO), forecasted 2003 summer peak usage is 63,028 megawatts of electricity. The PJM RTO's all-time peak usage was 63,762 megawatts recorded on August 14, 2002. The summer of 2002 brought nine of PJM's 10 highest all-time usage levels. At the time of the record peak no emergency procedures were implemented.
The forecast includes the estimated effects of 1,273 megawatts of interruptible demand and load management programs. Customers in these programs receive either a special rate or payments for stopping or reducing their use of electricity when requested in order to reduce demand on the grid.
By June 1, 2003, PJM expects to have 76,125 megawatts of generating capacity on line. That amount is 4,102 megawatts higher than a year earlier. About half of the expected increase in generation already is in service. With the new generation, PJM's reserve margin is expected to be 21.6 percent at the time of the forecasted peak. Reserve margin provides a "cushion" of generating capacity to meet unexpected high usage levels or equipment problems. A megawatt is enough electricity to power about 1,000 homes.
The forecast assumes normal summer weather conditions. It is a standard "50-50" forecast, meaning there is a 50 percent chance that actual peak summer usage will be higher or lower than the forecast.
PJM released its summer forecast in connection with the Mid-Atlantic Area Council's (MAAC) filing of its 2003 summer pre-seasonal assessment with the North American Electric Reliability Council. MAAC covers the eastern portion of the PJM RTO.
PJM is responsible for the reliability of the high-voltage electric system in all or parts of Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia and the District of Columbia.
PJM, the country's first fully functioning regional transmission organization, operates the world's largest competitive wholesale electricity market. The company currently coordinates a pooled generating capacity of more than 74,000 megawatts and operates a wholesale electricity market with more than 200 market buyers, sellers and traders of electricity. PJM has administered more than $15 billion in energy and energy service trades since the regional markets opened in 1997. More than 70 nations have sent delegates to PJM to learn about its market model and the operation of the grid in a seven-state region including more than 25 million people. Visit PJM at www.pjm.com.