Electric Reliability Update - May 6, 2016

May 6, 2016

FERC

FERC Accepts CMEP Rules of Procedure Revisions - May 4 -FERC issued a letter order accepting NERC’s revisions to its Rules of Procedure related to components of the risk-based Compliance Monitoring and Enforcement Program.

FERC Approves Revised Vegetation Management Standard - April 23 - NERC's uncontested petition for Commission approval of proposed Reliability Standard FAC-003-4 was approved by the Commission in a Letter Order. The approved standard revises the Minimum Vegetation Clearance Distances (MVCDs) based on additional testing regarding the appropriate gap factor to be used to calculate clearance distances for vegetation. Specifically, FAC-003-4 adjusts the the gap factor used to calculate MVCDs from 1.3 to 1.0 which will ultimately result in MVCDs that are higher in value. 

NERC

NERC Submits Supplemental Information for Proposed Reliability Standard - April 28 - NERC submitted to FERC an information filing for proposed Reliability Standard TPL-007-1 (Transmission System Planned Performance for Geomagnetic Disturbance Events).  NERC identified new information that may require minor changes to one of the supporting white papers.  The revision will be incorporated through NERC’s stakeholder process.

NERC Submits Comments in Response to NOI on Primary Frequency Response - April 25 – In response to concerns that the transforming resource mix may cause a decline in available frequency response capability, the Commission issued a Notice of Inquiry (NOI) seeking comments "on possible actions to ensure that the provision of primary frequency response continues to remain at levels adequate to maintain the reliability of the Bulk-Power System." In the comments submitted by NERC, NERC offers several factors for the Commission's consideration as it decides the best approach for addressing its concerns. 

NERC Submits Petition of Approval for Balancing Authority Control and Facility Interconnection Requirements - April 20 - NERC submitted to FERC a request for approval of proposed Reliability Standards BAL-005-1 (Balancing Authority Control) and FAC-001-3 (Facility Interconnection Requirements).  NERC also requested approval of revised definitions, associated Implementation Plans, Violation Risk Factors, Violation Severity Levels, and proposed retirement of Reliability Standards BAL-005-02b, FAC-001-2, and BAL-006-2. 

Other Developments

DOE to Hold Energy Security Public Workshop - April 27 - DOE will hold a public workshop on "New Opportunities and Challenges in U.S. Energy Security" on May 13 in Washington, D.C.  The conversation will focus on the meaning of energy security in a 21st century context. The Department is soliciting written comments until 5:00 pm on May 13 both at the workshop or via email at energysecuritycomments@hq.doe.gov.

GAO Releases Released Critical Infrastructure Protection Report - April 25 - The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report titled "Federal Agencies Have Taken Actions to Address Electromagnetic Risks, but Opportunities Exist to Further Assess Risks and Strengthen Collaboration."  The report provides an overview of actions taken by federal agencies to address electromagnetic risks to the bulk power system and what additional opportunities exist to enhance grid security.  Both DOE and DHS agreed with the recommendations of the report and identified planned actions that will address electromagnetic risks.

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The Van Ness Feldman Electric Reliability Update is published by Malcolm McLellanIlan GutherzVan SmithGabe TabakDarsh SinghTyler Elliott, and Michael Weiner.  Van Ness Feldman counsels, advises and trains a wide range of clients on reliability matters.  Please email us or call us at 206.829.1814 or 202.298.1800 for additional information.  Click here to sign up for the Reliability Update.