Washington, D.C. — An assessment of the December 2011 Phase 1 report of the Eastern Interconnection Planning Collaborative (“EIPC”) has been released. WIRES will prepare a similar assessment for the Western U.S. interconnection as that process advances closer to completion.
In asking The Brattle Group to conduct an evaluation of the EIPC data to date, WIRES sought to help stakeholders and the public better understand both the challenges to transmission planning that EIPC confronted and the details of the EIPC process. Phase 2, which examines selected scenarios that reflect a range of assumptions about transmission, will be completed by the end of 2012.
In December 2011, the EIPC stakeholder steering committee completed Phase I of a 2.5-year study funded by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to look at potential Eastern generation and transmission scenarios and the potential long-term needs of the grid.
The Brattle Group study concludes that the EIPC data confirms a substantial need for interregional transmission in the coming decades, the methodology employed by EIPC was designed more as a learning exercise than an actual plan for strengthening the transmission network.
For WIRES, this work will yield benefits in the years to come because experts in transmission and systems planning from dozens of states have learned how to work together toward optimal investment in the nation’s electric system.