The final rule requires all public utilities to adopt revised pro forma generator interconnection procedures and agreements to ensure that interconnection customers can interconnect to the transmission system in a reliable, efficient, transparent, and timely manner, and to prevent undue discrimination.
The final rule adopts reforms to:
Implement a first-ready, first-served cluster study process
- Transmission providers will conduct larger interconnection studies encompassing numerous proposed generating facilities, rather than separate studies for each individual generating facility. This approach will increase the efficiency of the interconnection process, help minimize delays and improve cost allocation by analyzing the transmission system impacts of multiple projects at once.
- To ensure that ready projects can proceed through the queue in a timely manner, interconnection customers will be subject to specific requirements, including financial deposits and site control conditions, to enter and remain in the interconnection queue.
Speed up interconnection queue processing
- The final rule imposes firm deadlines and establishes penalties if transmission providers fail to complete interconnection studies on time, but transmission providers may appeal their penalties at the Commission.
- Additionally, the rule establishes a detailed affected systems study process, including uniform modeling standards and pro forma affected system agreements.
Incorporate technological advancements into the interconnection process
- The final rule requires transmission providers to allow more than one generating facility to co-locate on a shared site behind a single point of interconnection and share a single interconnection request. This reform creates a more efficient standardized procedure for these types of generating facility configurations.
- The final rule allows interconnection customers to add a generating facility to an existing interconnection request under certain circumstances without such a request being automatically deemed a material modification.
- The final rule requires transmission providers to use operating assumptions in interconnection studies that reflect the proposed charging behavior of electric storage resources.
- The final rule requires transmission providers to evaluate alternative transmission technologies in their cluster studies.
- Finally, the final rule establishes modeling and performance standards for inverter-based resources.
Establish an effective date and a transition process
- Compliance filings are due 90 days after publication of the final rule in the Federal Register.
- To smooth the transition to the new rule, the Commission has adopted three options that can be exercised depending on the progress of the interconnection request:
- Those interconnection customers that have been tendered facilities study agreements by the transmission provider may proceed to a transitional serial study (a facilities study) or may opt to move to the transitional cluster study.
- Those interconnection customers in the interconnection queue that have not been tendered a facilities study agreement (have not completed the system impact study) will be eligible for the transitional cluster study.
All other interconnection customers will be subject to the new interconnection procedures