FERC Commissioners, clean energy industry show strong support for Grid Enhancing Technologies in transmission planning

FERC’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking issued yesterday drew from comments on their ANOPR which recommended the use of Grid Enhancing Technologies (GETs) in transmission planning. They cited NARUC comments which stated  “that an effective transmission planning process should maximize the use of existing transmission and build new transmission only where necessary or economic, asserting that the transmission planning process needs a clear pathway for consideration of alternative transmission solutions, including GETs.” 

After the NOPR’s announcement, leaders from FERC and the clean energy industry shared statements about the importance of GETs and the other reforms to transmission planning:

Commissioner Willie Phillips commented on GETs in his statement about the NOPR: “I also strongly support the NOPR proposal for greater consideration of dynamic line ratings and advanced power flow control devices in regional transmission planning processes. Grid-enhancing technologies (GETs) can optimize our existing transmission infrastructure and provide cost-effective solutions for consumers.  For example, by allowing the measurement of transmission capacity in real-time, dynamic line ratings can provide net benefits to customers by allowing increased power flow and reducing congestion costs, as well as by detecting when power flows should be reduced to avoid unnecessary wear on transmission equipment. The role that these and other GETs could play in delaying or eliminating the need for new transmission facilities cannot be ignored. I urge the Commission to consider further reforms to incentivize the adoption and deployment of GETs.” 

Jeff Dennis, Managing Director and General Counsel, Advanced Energy Economy, also applauded the inclusion of GETs: “We are glad that FERC proposes to specifically require transmission providers to consider how advanced transmission technologies like dynamic line ratings and grid enhancing technologies can meet transmission needs more quickly and at a lower cost.” 

Gregory Wetstone, CEO of ACORE said: This proposed rule addresses the need for long-term transmission planning that accounts for the grid of the future, which is vital for improving system resilience, keeping costs low for consumers, and delivering the clean power that Americans deserve. ACORE also strongly supports the inclusion of grid-enhancing technologies within such planning efforts.

Many other clean energy organizations shared support for the overall goals of the NOPR. 

Americans for a Clean Energy Grid collected statements of support from the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) 1245, BlueGreen Alliance, NRDC and many more.

The Clean Energy Buyers Association statement said “Overall, optimized transmission is critical to decarbonizing the entire grid for all energy customers at least-cost with improved reliability.” 

The Business Council for Sustainable Energy statement said: “Successful transmission planning processes are essential to the clean energy transition and will support system reliability and resilience, grid modernization and emissions reductions, while supporting family sustaining jobs.” 

The American Clean Power Association CEO Heather Zichal said: “We encourage FERC to refine and finalize today’s proposal so that current and anticipated transmission needs can be met in a timely and cost-effective manner and support a transition to a clean energy future.”