Skip Ribbon Commands
Skip to main content
Sign In

August 2020  •  Issue 29
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.

The ISO appoints Elliot Mainzer new president and CEO


The California Independent System Operator (ISO) Board of Governors has appointed Elliot Mainzer as the new president and CEO of the power market and grid operator, pending the retirement of Steve Berberich, currently at the helm of the ISO.

Mainzer will begin his new job on Sept. 30, 2020, and Berberich will remain at the ISO offices into October to help with the leadership transition.

Mainzer is currently the administrator and CEO of the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA), based in Portland, OR. He has served at the BPA for 18 years, holding the top position for the past seven years. He is responsible for managing the nonprofit federal agency that markets carbon-free power and operates much of the high-voltage electric grid across the Pacific Northwest.

After 14 years with the ISO, Berberich announced his retirement from the organization in February. He served as the president and CEO for nine years, overseeing the shift of the power grid to clean resources; the upgrade of energy management software; and the creation of the Western Energy Imbalance Market (EIM).

Read the news release.

back to top

Western EIM benefits surpass $1 billion


The ISO’s Western Energy Imbalance Market (EIM) surpassed $1 billion in gross benefits, marking a significant milestone for the real-time energy market launched in 2014.

The Western EIM reached the historic level in early July after a second-quarter report showed the market’s total gross benefits topped $998 million. With benefits averaging $1 million daily, the total figure was boosted to more than $1 billion on July 3, 2020.

The Western EIM is set for the entry of 10 new balancing authorities by 2022. Once these new participants are operational, the Western EIM will serve 82 percent of the Western Electricity Coordinating Council’s (WECC) total load. Read the news release.

back to top

Regional collaboration has benefited consumers in the West


The ISO’s Western EIM participants agree regional collaboration has benefited millions of people, and the market has been instrumental in meeting the needs of an evolving grid.

The Western EIM allows balancing authorities to optimize resources and increase the use of renewable energy. These efforts have also resulted in reductions in renewable energy curtailments. When there is an oversupply of renewable energy in one area, the energy is not shut off, but instead sent to another area to meet their energy demand.

Read “What they’re saying…” View the fact sheet to learn more about the Western EIM and its governance structure.

back to top

Stay up to date on summer electric conditions


The summer season brings hot weather, which increases demand for electricity. The ISO has made it a priority to provide the public with resources to stay up to date on all things energy.

The ISO has a variety of ways for the public to monitor grid conditions and to learn about the summer outlook, system alerts, and more. Today’s Outlook on the ISO website allows users to track real-time demand and supply, emissions, and day-ahead, 15-minute, and real-time wholesale energy prices. The public can also track these grid conditions and activate notifications for Flex Alerts and System Alerts, Warnings, and Emergencies through the ISO Today mobile app.

To learn more about Flex Alerts, visit To learn more about System Alerts, Warnings, and Emergencies visit the dedicated webpage.

back to top