PJM Interconnection expects higher winter peak demand than was anticipated in the system operator's 2019 report, according to its annual long-term forecast report. Summer peak demand, meanwhile, is expected to remain consistent with 2019.
The 2020 report incorporates "updated data and a significantly revised forecast methodology," according to PJM.
Summer and winter load growth for the PJM region are projected to grow 0.6% annually over the next ten years, and 0.5% annually between 2020 and 2035. Across all of PJM, net energy for load growth is expected to average out to 0.7% annually over the next decade. A total of 839,830 GWh are projected for 2030, an increase of 56,875 GWh from 2020.
The outlook factors in the proliferation of energy-efficient appliances, which are expected to produce "slight load reductions," and wider adoption of electric vehicles, which is expected to contribute a "small boost" to load growth over the next 15 years, according to the statement. The report also forecasts lower near-term growth than the prior report.
Distributed solar power generation's increased presence is also counted among the main factors impacting load growth over the next decade-and-a-half.
"The 2020 long-term load forecast accounts for more data about energy consumption by end-use sector, the growing impact of energy efficiency, the surge of behind-the-meter solar, the historical decline of industrial electricity use in the PJM region, and historical weather patterns dating back 25 years," PJM said in the statement.