Hybrid Resources in the MISO Electricity Market: An Emerging Opportunity

March 12, 2020 in Electricity Authors: Maggie Kristian, Matt Prorok

Electricity markets, the federal government, and state governments across the country are working on how to address hybrid resources, which are a combination of multiple generation technologies and/or storage devices that work together to provide energy, capacity, and other grid services. This post focuses on hybrid resources in the MISO (Midcontinent Independent System Operator) market and describes their unique attributes and value to the grid, which can help inform how market rules incorporate them. Continue reading »

Approval of a Wisconsin Transmission Project Marks a Major Milestone for Clean Energy in the Midwest

September 11, 2019 in Electricity Authors: Matt Prorok, Rolf Nordstrom

Sun shining past transmission linesIn 2007, a bipartisan group of seven governors announced ground-breaking energy and climate agreements that would go on to shape the region’s energy system. Over a decade later, Wisconsin regulators recently approved the capstone transmission project, the last in a set of 17 “multi-value transmission projects” (MVPs) across the region representing $6.5 billion in investment that grew out of those original agreementsThe MVP portfolio’s 17 projects will enable over 16 GW of wind generation to come online, delivering 52 million megawatt-hours (MWh) of energy throughout the MISO footprint through 2031. Put another way, without these lines, over 60 percent of the renewable energy needed to meet the region’s renewables goals through 2031 would have been curtailed.  Continue reading »

Analysis: How Demand Charges Impact Electric Vehicle Fast Charging Infrastructure

July 31, 2019 in Electricity, Reports & Whitepapers, Transportation & Fuels Authors: Dane McFarlane, Matt Prorok

A direct current fast charger

GPI recently released a white paper analyzing the economics of direct current fast charging (DCFC) as part of our work with the Midcontinent Transportation Electrification Collaborative (MTEC). DCFC stations are critical for widespread adoption of electric vehicles (EVs) because they provide access to much faster battery charging in public places and along major driving routes and highways. The white paper focused on a specific barrier to increased DCFC stations in the region: electric utility demand charges.  Continue reading »

How the 2019 Polar Vortex Helped Long-Term Renewable Energy Integration in the Midwest

March 1, 2019 in Electricity Author: Matt Prorok

Wind turbine in the winterAt the end of January, the polar vortex brought bitter cold temperatures to the Upper Midwest of the United States. Some parts of northern Minnesota hit -45°F temperatures with wind chills down to -65°F. The record-setting low temperatures and frigid wind chills posed a safety and reliability threat to the region’s people and infrastructure alike. Continue reading »

Shave, Shift, Shimmy: How Demand Response Can Unlock Value on the Electric Grid

July 23, 2018 in Carbon Management, Electricity Author: Matt Prorok

 

A row of electrical metersEarlier this month I attended the Midcontinent Independent System Operator’s (MISO) Board meeting “hot topic” discussion on resource adequacy representing the Environmental/Other Sector 

My comment on the topic was quoted by RTO Insider in their coverage of the meeting, where I discussed how distributed energy sources can unlock value for the system by “shaving loads, shifting loads, and shimmying loads.” This quote, which pertains specifically to demand response (DR) as a form of distributed energy resource, generated questions about what these terms mean and why they matter for the region. It is worth spending some time talking about these values and how they can help MISO and its members.  Continue reading »

“Smart” Charging Electric Vehicles with Solar at the Greenway Building

May 25, 2018 in Transportation & Fuels Authors: Dane McFarlane, Katelyn Bocklund, Matt Prorok

A man installing an electric vehicle charger

Electricity systems are increasingly becoming interactive and dynamic, opening up opportunities for energy technologies to “talk” to each other and create numerous benefits for energy consumers (e.g., increased efficiency, lower costs, and reduced emissions). This opportunity is one that GPI and our partners are exploring through the combination of electric vehicles (EVs) and solar energy.
Continue reading »

Analysis: Cost and Emission Benefits of Increased Demand Response in the MISO Region

January 31, 2018 in Efficiency, Electricity Authors: Matt Prorok, Steve Dahlke

Energy Meter

A recently published working paper by the Great Plains Institute (GPI), titled “Consumer Savings, Price, and Emissions Impacts of Increasing Demand Response in the Midcontinent Electricity Market,” explores the effects of increasing the use of demand response (DR) assets in the Midcontinent Independent System Operator’s (MISO) wholesale energy market. Continue reading »