Xcel not so into markets after all

Source: By Kelsey Tamborrino, Politico • Posted: Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Colorado utility Xcel Energy blew a hole in Southwest Power Pool’s plans for a western power market when the company announced late Friday it had dropped out of the Mountain West Transmission Group. SPP had been working with the informal group of power providers for months to try and join the power market – and SPP had advanced the effort as recently as last month. Xcel didn’t respond to a request for comment, but the press release said there were “limited benefits” in the effort and “increasingly uncertain costs.”

Perhaps most intriguing to ME is the company’s point that “Xcel now sees few opportunities for westward expansion of the RTO which might have added to the value proposition.” SPP faces competition from both California’s already established energy-imbalance market that includes utilities in the Pacific Northwest and Nevada, and a nascent joint project between eastern market operator PJM Interconnection and western reliability manager PEAK. Xcel’s press release did not say if it had engaged with either of these other projects.