Fort Collins based power authority considers joining Southwest Power Pool

Southwest Power Pool


The Southwest Power Pool of which Oklahoma is a member might soon pick up a new member—Platte River Power Authority based in Fort Collins, Colorado.

The SPP announced Thursday it had received Platte River’s notice of intent to join several western entities evaluating participation in the SPP’s regional transmission organization.

In January 2022, Platte River announced plans to join SPP’s Western Energy Imbalance Service (WEIS) Market effective April 2023. Their latest notice of intent demonstrates continued recognition of the value of SPP RTO participation.

“We look forward to joining the WEIS next year and SPP’s RTO in 2025,” said Melie Vincent, chief operating officer for Platte River. “Participation will enhance the ability to achieve the noncarbon energy goal of Platte River and our owner communities while maintaining our commitment to system reliability and financial sustainability.”

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Platte River is the most recent addition to a group of electric service providers in the West publicly committed to exploring RTO expansion in the Western Interconnection. SPP administers the WEIS market on a contract basis and provides RTO participants with an entire suite of valuable services including market administration, transmission planning, reliability coordination and more.

WEIS participants who move to full RTO membership can expect to receive similar savings and benefits as members in the Eastern Interconnection. In 2021, SPP saved its members $2.696 billion, compared to $149.0 million in net revenue requirement costs, a benefit-to-cost ratio of 18-to-1.

“We are pleased that Platte River will be joining the WEIS market next year and is evaluating the cost and benefits of full RTO membership,” said Bruce Rew, senior vice president of operations. “Our continued collaboration will enable us to help them reliably and economically serve their communities while meeting their clean energy goals.”

SPP has established a goal of March 2023 for western utilities to indicate their intent to participate in the initial expansion of the SPP RTO into the western interconnection.