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The New York Independent System Operator (NYISO) reports that the average wholesale electric energy price for 2012 was the lowest in the 12-year history of New York's competitive markets for wholesale electricity. Last year's average annual wholesale price of $45.23/MWh eclipsed the previous record-low price of $48.63/MWh in 2009.

As more than 1,400 MW of generation with an average age of 43 years were retired or suspended operation in 2012, NYISO says the state's wholesale electricity markets continued to drive new investments in cleaner and more efficient generation that contributed to reliable market and grid operations. In keeping with recent trends, of the more than 745 MW of new generation that came online in 2012, most are powered by natural gas or wind.

NYISO says a wind forecasting system implemented by the operator enables better utilization of wind resources by forecasting the availability and timing of wind-powered generation. NYISO adds that it was the first grid operator in the nation to integrate wind power in its economic dispatch system, fully balancing the reliability requirements of the power system with the use of the least-costly power. As a result of these initiatives, the operator says that wind generators in New York were able to produce at full capability without restriction 98% of the time, producing 3,302 GWh of electricity in 2012, more than 500 GWh above levels achieved in 2011.

Jackson Morris, director of strategic engagement at the Pace Energy and Climate Center, commends NYISO for its wind-integration efforts.

“As New York pursues ambitious goals to scale up renewable resources, such as wind and solar, it is essential that our wholesale market rules and grid operations keep pace with these changes,” says Morris. “With its continued efforts to efficiently integrate wind onto the grid, the NYISO has demonstrated its ability to innovate in order to optimize the performance of our evolving electric fleet.”



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