A brand new report from the Wind Solar Alliance (WSA) finds that electrical energy market reforms within the Midwest, Great Lakes and Mid-Atlantic may find yourself saving customers greater than $6.9 billion yearly.

Consulting corporations Grid Strategies and Milligan Grid Solutions co-authored the report, Quantifying the Consumer Benefits of the Market Reforms in the Report “Customer Focused and Clean,” for WSA.

It concludes that the common residential buyer within the PJM area, which incorporates the Mid-Atlantic and Great Lakes, may save as much as $47 yearly with considerably extra wind, solar and storage on the grid. Consumers within the Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO) area, which incorporates 15 states and the Canadian province of Manitoba, may save as much as $48 yearly.

“Consumers are looking for clean, affordable and reliable energy that will keep their monthly electricity bills low,” says Kristin Munsch, deputy director of the Illinois Citizens Utility Board and president of the Board of the Consumer Advocates of the PJM States Inc. “There is great potential to achieve those goals with the cost-effective integration of wind, solar and storage plants into our wholesale power markets.”

These projected financial savings quantify of a number of the main market reforms beneficial in one other WSA report, Customer Focused and Clean: Power Markets for the Future, launched final November.

“Enhancing the current market structures to encourage more flexible, efficient markets that also reflect the current public policy choices of state legislatures could save billions for consumers,” says Michael Milligan, president of Milligan Grid Solutions and report co-author. “The existing wholesale power market rules were largely developed for slower-to-react, ‘conventional’ generators, such as coal and nuclear plants. This report demonstrates the benefits of updating the rules to better accommodate the characteristics and potential contributions of newer sources of low-cost generation.”

Among the reforms thought of, rising power system flexibility by market buildings is probably the most helpful for customers at increased penetrations of renewable assets, the report says.

“There are currently artificial barriers that are preventing the full participation of renewables, storage and other new technologies in the PJM and MISO markets,” notes Michael Goggin, vice chairman of Grid Strategies and report co-author. “Providing consumers with a real-time price signal that allows them to adjust their demand, rewarding flexible resources for their capabilities through improved market design, and allowing renewable and storage resources to participate in reliability services markets would yield the greatest consumer benefits.”

The report additionally discovered potential cost-savings from enhancing coordination throughout the seams between ISO markets and thru limiting the self-scheduling of turbines.

“The suite of reforms proposed in this report show that the current market structures are not reflecting and incentivizing the full capabilities of the low-cost wind and solar resources available today,” says Kevin O’Rourke, interim govt director of WSA. “We hope that regulators and market participants will use the findings from this report to advocate for more consumer-focused market structures going forward.”

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