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December 2019  •  Issue 23
As a federally regulated nonprofit organization, the ISO plans and operates the state's high-voltage electric grid and "keeps the lights on" for California and a portion of Nevada.

Western EIM reports $64.81 million in 3rd quarter benefits


The Western Energy Imbalance Market’s (EIM) third-quarter 2019 report shows the market generated $64.81 million in gross benefits.

Since 2014, the real-time energy market has produced a total of $801.07 million in benefits.

The Western EIM uses advanced technologies to automatically find and deliver the lowest cost energy to consumers across eight western states. It optimizes resources from a larger and more diverse pool, and allows the integration of renewable energy that may otherwise be curtailed at certain times of the day, providing an added environmental benefit.

Since 2015, the market has reduced a total of 418,031 metric tons of CO2 in greenhouse gas emissions, which is the equivalent of removing the emissions of 87,889 passenger cars driven for one year.

View Western EIM, for more information about the real-time energy market.

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ISO hosts seminars to prepare for Extended Day-Ahead stakeholder initiative activities


Several stakeholders recently took the first steps to participate in the design of the Extended Day-Ahead energy (EDAM) market to be launched by the California Independent System Operator (ISO) in 2022.

This fall more than 150 market participants attended one of three workshops hosted by the ISO to educate them on the Day-Ahead Market in preparation for a stakeholder initiative process to design the EDAM. A voluntary market, EDAM will extend day-ahead functionality to real-time Western Energy Imbalance Market (EIM) participants.

The workshops were especially significant to Western EIM entities who have had very little exposure to the Day-Ahead Market as they currently participate in a real-time energy market that uses advanced market systems to automatically find the lowest cost energy to serve customer demand.

“As part of our ongoing commitment to provide outstanding customer service, we recognized it was important to help stakeholders understand the Day-Ahead Market so they can fully engage and give meaningful feedback during the initiative process,” said Joanne Serina, Executive Director, Customer Service and Stakeholder Affairs.

The EDAM initiative process kicked off in September when the ISO Board of Governors approved a Western EIM request to start the stakeholder process after the entities suggested their participation in the Day-Ahead Market could offer them additional benefits. Benefits are achieved through day-ahead hourly trading of energy, and diversity to reduce the amount of imbalance reserve needed.

The initiative process began in October and requires new market policies, and governance policies and processes. For more information, visit the EDAM stakeholder initiative webpage.

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ISO launches advanced grid operating system


The California Independent System Operator (ISO) upgraded its power grid operating technology in October, making it the most advanced in the industry.

The Siemens Spectrum Power 7 energy management system will better serve ISO customers while meeting the challenges of an evolving energy landscape.

Moving to the Siemens product improves grid power flow accuracy that supports market enhancements and network applications, which allows for broader renewable energy integration. The new system also enhances operators’ situational awareness; offers operational flexibility with frequent model changes and upgrades critical infrastructure protection.

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New online features make it easier for ISO customers to participate in public processes


In our effort to continually improve customer service, the California Independent System Operator (ISO) made important web page changes designed to enhance the user’s online experience by making it easier to find information, participate in our public processes, and learn about ISO services.

Our most recent update to the RC West webpages and addition of the participant portal tool launched after the ISO became the reliability coordinator for 41 balancing authorities and transmission operators in the western United States. In addition to the dashboard and workflow features, the page offers RC West Oversight committee and foundational documents.

The newly redesigned Stakeholder Initiative page is organized to enhance public participation in policy development. The page, introduced in November 2019, now offers new filter and search tools giving users the ability to quickly find initiatives. Users can easily track initiative milestones, including phases, meeting dates, document postings, comments submission deadlines, filings and implementation dates with the status table feature.

For our market participants with access to the Customer Inquiry Dispute Information (CIDI) application, the ISO now has more than 300 knowledge articles from many divisions for customers to review prior to submitting an inquiry. The changes have resulted in thousands of views of articles and customer self-service for quicker resolution to their questions.

Be sure to check out our new pages and tools each designed to be a resource for market participants and the public to learn about electric grids, markets and the ISO’s role in maintaining a reliable grid.


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ISO expands its reliability coordinator services


The California Independent System Operator (ISO) launched its expanded Reliability Coordinator (RC) services, called RC West, making it the RC of record for 41 entities across 14 western states and northern Mexico.

RC West now has oversight of power grid reliability for balancing authorities and transmission operators in the Western Interconnection, monitoring compliance for 87 percent of the load in the western US.

A Reliability Coordinator has the highest level of authority and responsibility for the reliable operation of power grids, and has wide visibility of bulk electric systems.

In January 2018, the ISO announced plans to become a Reliability Coordinator for entities within its footprint and to offer the service to all balancing authorities and transmission operators in the West.

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