NERC issues calls for action

16 October 2006 -- The adequacy of North America's electricity system will decline unless changes are made soon, Rick Sergel, president and CEO of the North American Electric Reliability Council (NERC) announced today, in conjunction with the release of NERC's first reliability assessment since being named the Electric Reliability Organization (ERO) for the United States. NERC is working to gain recognition as the ERO in the various jurisdictions in Canada by the end of the year.

NERC's 2006 Long-Term Reliability Assessment Report analyzes the adequacy of electricity supply and transmission reliability in North America through 2015, and calls for actions to improve bulk power system reliability.

Demand for electricity is expected to increase over the next 10 years by 19 percent in the United States, but confirmed power capacity will increase by only 6 percent. Capacity margins are projected to drop below minimum target levels in Texas, New England, the Mid-Atlantic area, the Midwest and the Rocky Mountain area, in the next two to three years, with other portions of the northeastern states, southwest, and western states falling below minimum target levels later in the period. In Canada, projected margins are adequate except in Western Canada, where additional resources will be needed as soon as 2008.

The transmission system requires additional investment to address reliability issues and economic impacts, according to Sergel. Expansion and strengthening of the transmission system continues to lag demand growth and expansion of generating resources in most areas. Total transmission miles are projected to increase by less than 7 percent in the U.S. and by only 3.5 percent in Canada through 2015.

The adequacy of electricity supplies depends, in part, on the reliability of fuel supply and delivery systems, not just the installed capacity of generators, according to Sergel. Gas-fired generating capacity additions are projected to account for almost half of the resource additions over the 2006-2015 period, with coal accounting for the other half. Strengthening coal and gas delivery infrastructures, and firming up gas supply and delivery contracts, will reduce the potential for shortages in electricity due to fuel disruptions.

"Our economy and quality of life are more reliant on electricity every day, yet the operation and planning for a reliable and adequate electricity system is becoming increasingly difficult. These convergent trends require industry and government to work together to adopt a longer-term, more coordinated planning strategy. This report is intended to provide a factual basis for implementing such a strategy," said Sergel.

The NERC report identifies 22 necessary actions that encompass all areas of the bulk power system including generation, transmission, fuel supply and delivery, and demand response. Specific recommended actions include:


  • Addition of power generation facilities;

  • New and upgraded transmission facilities;

  • Stronger contracts and other arrangements for the reliable supply and delivery of fuel to power generation facilities;

  • More "demand-side" measures such as business and consumer energy efficiency programs;

  • Addressing aging workforce issues in the electric industry.


"Smart growth of the system requires diverse solutions. A reliable and adequate electricity system depends on a combination of adequate generation and transmission, diversified fuel sources, energy efficiency, demand response, and other industry/customer programs," explains Sergel. "This will require a concerted and cooperative effort by industry, government, and customers."

Sponsored by FLSmidth

Related Articles

The Blockbuster Conundrum

Remember Blockbuster Video? Not too many years ago, Blockbuster was a business titan.

Gaelectric pursues FERC complaint over 460-MW wind project

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on April 29 will publish in the Federal Register a notice seeking comment on a complaint filed April 21 against NorthWestern Corp. by the developer of a 460-MW wind farm project in Montana.

Follow Power Engineering on Twitter
Latest News

GAO looks at reliability impacts of changing power generation mix

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) on June 29 released a study provided a month befor...

On the day after MATS decision, Bernstein sees only a limited reprieve for coal units

In light of the U.S. Supreme Court ruling against the EPA's Mercury and Air Toxics Standards ...

Pence says Indiana will not comply with coal plant regulations

Indiana will not comply with President Barack Obama's plan to battle climate change by requir...

Westermost Rough offshore wind park enters operations

The 210-MW offshore wind power plant, Westermost Rough, has entered operations. The project w...

Duke Energy to upgrade energy storage system at Notrees Windpower Project

Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK), Samsung SDI and Younicos will work together to update Duke Energy's ...

Wisconsin Energy acquires Integrys, forms WEC Energy Group

Wisconsin Energy Corp. successfully acquired Integrys Energy - forming the WEC Energy Group (...

Regulator rejects Iberdrola plan to buy Connecticut utility

Connecticut regulators have taken a step toward rejecting a plan by Iberdrola, Spain's leadin...

Largest Southern Co. subsidiary enters rooftop solar market

The largest Southern Co. subsidiary will start selling and installing solar panels on homes W...

Power Engineering Current Issue

12/01/2014
Volume 118, Issue 12
1412pe-cover1
Products Showcase
Dynamic Fluoride Ion cleaning DFIC of industrial natural gas turbines Hi-Tech Furnace Systems

Dynamic Fluoride Ion Cleaning of IGT Parts

The Dynamic Fluoride Ion Cleaning (DFIC) Process from Hi-Tech Furnace Systems is able to clean deep, narrow cracks of oxides by cycling between negative, atmospheric, and positive pressure.

Archived Articles

2000 | 2001 | 2002 | 2003 | 2004 | 2005 | 2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010 | 2011 | 2012 | 2013

Buyers Guide Categories

Buyers Guide Product Listings

Transmission Services

Blattner Energy is a diversified electrical gen...

Sargent & Lundy Engineering & Design Services

Our experience and capabilities for power deliv...
Power Industry Wire News

Boomerang Oil -- Shareholder Update for the Fiscal Year 2014 and the First Half of 2015

Boomerang Oil -- Shareholder Update for the Fiscal Year 2014 and the First Half of 2015

ZaZa Energy Reports Mid-Year 2015 Reserves and Operational Update

ZaZa Energy Reports Mid-Year 2015 Reserves and Operational Update

Range Announces Redemption Notice of 6.75% Senior Subordinated Notes Due 2020

Range Announces Redemption Notice of 6.75% Senior Subordinated Notes Due 2020

Black Gold Resources Acquires Stake in the 10 Well Income Joint Venture in Caldwell County, TX

Black Gold Resources Acquires Stake in the 10 Well Income Joint Venture in Caldwell Cou...

GlobalView Now Offers Exclusive Real-Time Delivery of Fast Weather Benchmark Data

GlobalView Now Offers Exclusive Real-Time Delivery of Fast Weather Benchmark Data

Power Engineering

Article Archives for Power Engineering Magazine

Continuing Education

Professional Development Hours

To access a course listing associated to a specific topic listed below, click on the topic of choice from the list below.

Latest Energy Jobs

View more Job Listings >>