NERC Encouraged To Examine Impact of Increased Coal Retirements on Grid Reliability

Washington, D.C. – Today, America’s Power, along with the National Mining Association and the Lignite Energy Council, sent a letter to the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) to encourage NERC to update its 2018 report (called a “Special Reliability Assessment”) on the impact of accelerated coal and nuclear retirements on the reliability of the electric grid. NERC, who is responsible for assuring the reliability of the North American electricity grid, conducted their analysis over rising concerns about reliability and loss of generation diversity on the electric grid. NERC’s 2018 “Special Reliability Assessment” came to the conclusion that if large baseload retirements (coal and nuclear) were to “happen faster than the system can respond with replacement generation, including any necessary transmissions facilities or replacement fuel infrastructure, significant reliability problems could occur.”

America’s Power issued the following statement by Michelle Bloodworth, President and CEO:

“We and others have a lot of respect for NERC’s work, which is why it’s important for NERC to update its 2018 report to reflect the alarming number of coal retirements. We believe these retirements, including those tied to the economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic, continue to put the reliability of the grid at risk. We hope that by updating their report, NERC can help to educate decisionmakers so they will take steps to avoid even more retirements.”

The joint letter with America’s Power, National Mining Association and the Lignite Energy Council can be found here: http://www.americaspower.org/issue/americas-power-letter-to-nerc-regarding-generation-retirement-scenario-sra/

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America’s Power is a partnership of industries involved in producing electricity from coal.