FERC OKs dissolution of SPP Regional Entity, transfer of entities

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission recently signed off on a proposal that calls for the dissolution of the Southwest Power Pool Regional Entity. The Commission also authorized the North American Electric Reliability Corporation to proceed with a planned transfer of registered entities in the SPP Regional Entity footprint to the Midwest Reliability Organization and the SERC Reliability Corporation.

FERC took the action in response to a joint filing submitted by NERC, MRO, and SERC that proposed to dissolve the SPP Regional Entity and expand the regional boundaries of MRO and SERC.

Compliance monitoring and enforcement activities are carried out on behalf of NERC by several regional entities, based on authority granted pursuant to regional delegation agreements in place. As the FERC-certified electric reliability organization, NERC oversees these regional programs and seeks to ensure consistency and fairness. MRO and SERC are both regional entities.

The May 4 FERC order approves the termination of the SPP Regional Entity’s delegation agreement with NERC and its oversight responsibilities and provides a deadline of Aug. 31, 2018, for the organization to wind down its operations.

It also approves the revised NERC delegation agreements with MRO and SERC, to be effective on July 1, 2018, and authorizes NERC to proceed with its proposed transfer of registered entities in the SPP Regional Entity footprint to MRO and SERC.

MRO Interim President and CEO Sara Patrick said that having a decision in place allows MRO to continue to proceed with certain critical path items that are necessary for an organized transfer of registered entities, while MRO Board Chair Silvia Parada Mitchell said that the revised regional boundaries will promote regional coordination and reliable operations of the bulk power system.

MRO notes that on July 1, MRO’s new regional footprint will include more than 220 registered entities and all or part of the states of Arkansas, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Texas and Wisconsin, and the Canadian provinces of Manitoba and Saskatchewan.

Several public power utilities are members of MRO and SERC and as a result of the dissolution of the SPP Regional Entity, public power utility members of the SPP Regional Entity will transfer to MRO and SERC.

MRO said that it has already made considerable progress, working alongside NERC and SPP Regional Entity, on the transition of oversight responsibilities and data, and does not foresee any barriers to a seamless transfer of registered entities by the July 1, 2018 deadline.