The Bonneville Power Administration filed a new plan with federal regulators Tuesday to deal with wind farm shut offs when too much hydropower is being generated in the region. But it’s not one that wind generators say they can live with.
The plan filed Tuesday is a methodology for allocating curtailment costs and would have BPA cover half the cost of wind farm’s lost revenue when it cuts output.
Wind farm owners say the allocation formula works fine. But they say the real, unresolved issue is whether BPA, which controls three-quarters of the region’s transmission system, agrees to live by federal rules and treat all generators by the same rules, including itself. They want BPA to file a full blown open access tariff that is subject to policing and enforcement by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.
The power marketing agency is run according to its own governing statutes today, and its public utility customers don’t want the agency subject to any outside federal control that restricts the regional preferences built into those statutes.
BPA says it will file a full tariff by the end of the month that complies with federal energy regulators earlier orders. Wind developers contend that BPA’s proposed tariff is essentially voluntary, and would maintain its self regulating nature.
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