NBSO joins with regulatory authorities to enhance reliability

Fredericton, New Brunswick, April 7, 2009 — The provincial government has signed memorandums of understanding (MOUs) with three other organizations to improve the reliability of the bulk power system in this region. The New Brunswick bulk power system includes high-voltage transmission facilities, particularly the 345 kV lines, whose operations may affect neighboring power systems.

The MOUs were signed by the Department of Energy, the New Brunswick System Operator (NBSO), the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC), and the Northeast Power Coordinating Council Inc. (NPCC).

With the proclamation of the Electricity Act in 2004, New Brunswick became one of the first provinces to introduce mandatory requirements for bulk power system reliability. Under the act, administered by the Department of Energy, the NBSO is responsible for adopting and enforcing reliability standards applicable to owners, users and operators of the New Brunswick bulk power system.

NERC has more than 100 reliability standards; they are mandatory and enforceable for all users, owners, and operators of the bulk power system in the United States. While the degree of enforceability varies among the provinces, all of them have taken measures to ensure reliability standards apply to appropriate entities in their jurisdictions.

“Through this agreement, the NBSO continues to fulfill its objects under the act in regards to participating with other authorities in the development of standards and criteria relating to the reliability of transmission systems,” said Sylvain Gignac, president and CEO of NBSO. “Through NERC standards, the NBSO ensures that the bulk power system in New Brunswick, which forms part of the greater northeastern grid, is operated and planned in a reliable manner.”

Under the MOUs, New Brunswick recognizes the role of NERC as the electric reliability organization for North America. Furthermore, New Brunswick will adopt and implement NERC and NPCC standards and compliance processes. The parties agree to work closely to address reliability issues in the region and promote uniform standards and consistent enforcement across the integrated, international bulk power system.

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