What’s Keeping the Lights On?

Welcome to Grid Brief! Today we’re looking at power generation and power prices in America’s power markets, with news items where relevant.

What’s Keeping the Lights On?

Let’s start with a snapshot of generation nation-wide:

Natural gas and nuclear were the top two generators in America with coal and wind trading third.

And here’s a map to orient you as we move through the market areas:


Natural gas, nuclear, and hydro were the most prolific power producers in New England.

Real time prices in New England tracked with day ahead prices, sometimes dropping toward zero or even into the negatives.

ISO-NE expects winter resource adequacy issues as renewable energy grows its share of the power market’s energy portfolio. “Between now and 2040 the ISO expects its system to move from 6 GW of solar capacity to 28 GW, with most of that behind the meter. There are currently about 1.4 GW of wind resources on the system, but the grid operator expects that to grow by about 17 GW of offshore capacity,” reports Utility Dive. “Gas will fall from about 45% of New England’s electricity production in 2022 to about 12% in 2040, according to ISO projections, while renewables will rise from about 11% to 56% across the same period.”


In America’s largest power market, natural gas and nuclear traded turns at number one while wind and coal dueled for third.

Real-time prices spiked over day-ahead several times in PJM, but they otherwise stayed closely linked.

A third circuit court sided with various utilities against FERC’s approval of PJM’s rework of a capacity auction. “FERC allowed PJM to adopt a new rule to address anomalous high capacity prices in its latest capacity auction, but the federal appeals court said the change was illegal retroactive ratemaking,” reports Utility Dive. “FERC’s decision was challenged by the PJM Power Providers Group, Constellation Energy Generation, the Electric Power Supply Association and NRG Business Marketing. They were supported by Vistra, Advanced Energy United, American Clean Power Association and the Solar Energy Industries Association.”

PJM also released its Annual State of the Market report, which we will be delving into on Friday’s Deep Dive for premium subscribers.

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