Texas QSE To Pay $15,000 Under Settlement With PUC Staff
November 30, 2018 Email This Story Copyright 2010-17 EnergyChoiceMatters.com
Reporting by Paul Ring • firstname.lastname@example.org
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Ector County Energy Center LLC would pay $15,000 under a settlement with Staff of the Public Utility Commission of Texas to resolve alleged violations of Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) Nodal Protocols § 126.96.36.199.3(3)(a) and (b), relating to non-spinning reserve service energy deployment criteria; and the ERCOT Non-Spinning Reserve Service Deployment and Recall Procedure.
According to the settlement, Ector is the QSE for Generation Resources ECEC_G1 (Unit G1) and ECEC_G2 (Unit G2). Both units are 178 megawatt (MW) simple-cycle combustion turbines located at the Ector County Energy Center northwest of Odessa, TX.
According to the settlement, on May 15, 2017, at 17:38, Ector received a Non-Spin Reserve Service (NSRS) deployment instruction from ERCOT. The deployment was made to provide voltage support for the Midland-Odessa area due to a planned outage on a nearby 345 kilovolt (kV) line.
According to the settlement, Ector initiated startup for Unit G2, but unanticipated operational complications prevented timely deployment of the unit. According to the settlement, at 18:12, Ector determined it could not repair Unit G2 in time to meet the deployment requirements. Ector notified ERCOT that it was unable to timely deploy Unit G2, and that it was transferring the deployment obligation to Unit G1. Unit G1 was online at 18:34 -- 56 minutes after NSRS was deployed by ERCOT.
According to the settlement, after Unit G1 was online, Ector contacted ERCOT to inquire when they could take the unit offline. The ERCOT operator explained that Ector must stay online until 22:00 (the entire NSRS award period) or until Ector received a formal recall message from ERCOT. According to the settlement, Ector misidentified an alarm as a recall message from ERCOT, and took Unit G1 offline at 19:40. An ERCOT Operator contacted Ector to inquire why the unit was offline and informed Ector that ERCOT had not sent a recall message. ERCOT operators sent a recall message to Ector at 20:04.
As stated in the settlement, "Ector violated ERCOT Nodal Protocols § 188.8.131.52.3(3)(b) because Ector failed to provide NSRS within 25 minutes following a deployment instruction."
As stated in the settlement, "Ector violated ERCOT's Non-Spinning Reserve Service Deployment and Recall Procedure because Ector took a NSRS-deployed Resource offline 24 minutes before receiving a recall instruction from ERCOT."
According to the settlement, on May 16, 2017, Ector received a NSRS deployment instruction from ERCOT. On this day, according to the settlement, Ector successfully deployed Unit G2; however, Ector did not update the Ancillary Service Schedule for Non-Spin for Generation Resources and Controllable Load Resources (Non-Spin Schedule) to reflect this NSRS deployment.
As stated in the settlement, "Ector violated ERCOT Nodal Protocols § 184.108.40.206.3(3)(a) because Ector failed to update the Non-Spin Schedule to reflect the NSRS deployment amount within 20 minutes following a deployment instruction."
According to the settlement, to prevent violations of this nature in the future, Ector asserts that its operating procedures now require an immediate switch to another available unit if a unit with a NSRS deployment instruction fails to start, exhibits symptoms that could lead to a delay in startup, or trips during the start-up process. Additionally, Ector asserts that it has automated updates to the Non-Spin schedule to reduce the risk of human error.