WINCHESTER, Ky. (Dec. 27, 2012)— The Kentucky Public Service Commission (PSC) on Dec. 21 approved an application from EKPC (East Kentucky Power Cooperative) to integrate its system into the PJM Interconnection, a regional transmission organization.
The commission’s approval includes several conditions, such as requiring that EKPC regularly report on integration efforts and the costs and benefits of joining PJM.
Pending approval of a final agreement with PJM by EKPC’s board of directors, as well as approval by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and the consent of the Rural Utilities Service (RUS), EKPC plans to integrate into PJM on June 1, 2013.
“Membership in PJM will help EKPC offset rising costs for its 16 owner-member cooperatives and the 520,000 Kentucky homes and businesses they serve,” said David Crews, EKPC’s senior vice president of power supply. “PJM membership will enable our cooperative to operate more efficiently and economically, providing affordable access to a mature power market.”
Valley Forge, Pa.,-based PJM coordinates and directs the operation of a regional transmission grid, administers a competitive wholesale electricity market and plans regional transmission expansion improvements for an area that includes 60 million people in all or portions of 13 states and the District of Columbia. PJM dispatches 185,000 megawatts of generating capacity, and its generators produce more electricity than Canada and Mexico combined.
EKPC currently operates its own control area, where the co-op is responsible for matching electric-generation from its power plants with members’ demand for electricity on a minute-by-minute basis in the most reliable and economic manner. Should EKPC become a member, PJM will serve that role.