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PJM states forging ahead to create a voluntary forward clean energy market


Aiming to complete market design by year end

FERC jurisdiction remains in question

  • Author
  • Jared Anderson
  • Editor
  • Gary Gentile
  • Commodity
  • Electric Power

A group of PJM Interconnection states is pushing ahead with plans to create a voluntary forward energy attribute market by the end of the year that would be unbundled from PJM's existing power markets, allowing states to pursue their clean energy policies.

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"Establishing a voluntary and competitive Forward Clean Energy Market to enable states to more efficiently decarbonize PJM's grid and meet public policy objectives is a high priority to certain PJM states," according to a Forward Energy Attribute Market Working Group draft charter that was posted to the grid operator's website and discussed during a Sept. 22 PJM Clean Attribute Procurement Senior Task Force meeting.

A group calling itself the Organization of PJM States Inc., or OPSI, will convene a working group, jointly with PJM, to move toward development and implementation of a forward clean energy market, the charter said.

PJM had been working with stakeholders to explore the creation of an Integrated Attribute Capacity Market and a Forward Energy Attribute Market, but the CAPSTF's most recent polling showed that PJM stakeholders "do not view these efforts as a priority" at this time and that such conceptual designs "may never materialize into a market structure through the CAPSTF," according to the charter.

The working group will seek to provide a fully developed Forward Clean Energy Market design and implementation strategy by the end of 2023.

One stakeholder asked how this market would work with PJM's existing capacity, energy, and ancillary service markets.

A representative from the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities said the voluntary forward procurement would run prior to PJM's capacity market auction and the results would be known before PJM market participants put in their capacity bids.

"We have done analysis on how this would impact other PJM markets but there is no certainty on price impacts," the NJBPU staff member said.

The products to be procured are still under discussion but they will be unbundled from PJM products, the staff member said.

FERC jurisdiction in question

One important consideration is whether this new market would fall under the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's jurisdiction.

"That's a great question and we're trying to hone in on that. It might not be FERC jurisdictional," the NJBPU staff member said.

The forward clean energy products could be unbundled but could still impact PJM markets, and if they do have impacts, there should be a stakeholder process to ensure things work in a complementary fashion, a PJM stakeholder said.

Asked if there is enough time to get the forward clean energy market ready by the end of the year, NJBPU staff said the group has a solid foundation with commonly accepted governing principles and a market design. The working group is currently looking at "niche rules and fine tuning," then after the end of the year they would create governing documents and figure out how long it will take to get the market up and running, the NJBPU representative said.

There are 10 states currently on the distribution list but that does not mean they are all committed to participating in the new market, NJBPU staff said.

The working group's public meetings will be held on Oct. 19, Nov. 16, and Dec. 14.

Additionally, PJM staff said they will bring a recommendation to sunset the Clean Attribute Procurement Senior Task Force to the PJM Markets and Reliability Committee for a vote. The recommendation to disband the task force is based on the fact that it has accomplished the tasks set forth in its charter.