On April 15, the US Department of Energy (DOE) conducted a stakeholder outreach meeting in Boston, MA, as it collects information from various regions of the country for the second iteration of its Quadrennial Energy Review (QER). The 2016 version of the QER is focused on all aspects of the electric grid, from bulk power generation to end users to distributed generation, microgrids, and other “grid-edge” issues. The April 15 meeting highlighted issues impacting New England, New York, and states covered by the PJM Interconnection footprint.
Steve Rourke, ISO New England Vice President for System Planning, participated in a panel on various challenges to the regions, including the rapid transformation of New England’s power plant fleet and the need for additional infrastructure. His presentation also highlighted the impacts of clean energy policies being implemented by policymakers in specific states and region-wide. Additional panels explored the impact of an evolving electric system on end users, as well as the ability of markets to ensure resource adequacy.
Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz, Dr. John Holdren, Director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, and Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker began the meeting with thoughts on the challenges facing New England and the Northeast. Secretary Moniz stressed the importance of innovation to meet the challenges faced by the US electric system, and Governor Baker highlighted his commitment to the development of large-scale hydropower resources and the need to invest in energy storage.
The DOE will conduct additional stakeholder meetings in various regions in the coming months and will continue to accept formal comments on the second iteration of the QER through July 1, 2016.
The 2016 version of the QER (version 1.2) follows last year’s initial report focusing on the transportation, storage, and distribution of all forms of energy, including electricity. The report highlighted the natural gas pipeline constraints in New England, their impacts on the price of natural gas and wholesale electricity, and the steps taken by ISO New England to meet the resulting reliability challenges. Read more about ISO New England’s participation in development of that report: