Western Energy Imbalance Service Market

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SPP invites utilities to help build an electricity market to serve the west

SPP’s Western Energy Imbalance Service market (WEIS) will balance generation and load regionally and in real time for participants in the Western Interconnection.

SPP will administer the WEIS on a contract basis beginning February 2021. Utilities do not have to be a member of the SPP regional transmission organization (RTO) to participate. The market will centrally dispatch energy from participating resources throughout the region every five minutes, enhancing both the reliability and affordability of electricity delivery from utilities to their customers.

Eight utilities will be participants of the WEIS Market when it launches in February 2021:

  • Basin Electric Power Cooperative
  • Deseret Power Electric Cooperative
  • Municipal Energy Agency of Nebraska
  • Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association
  • Western Area Power Administration
    • Upper Great Plains West
    • Rocky Mountain Region
    • Colorado River Storage Projects
  • Wyoming Municipal Power Agency

SPP’s previous energy imbalance market went live in 2007 and provided participants with $103 million in benefits in its first year of operation.

As the market’s administrator, SPP will maintain reliability of the region’s transmission system and meet demand with the most cost-effective generation available, reducing wholesale electricity costs for participants. Like SPP’s previous markets, the WEIS will provide price transparency of wholesale energy, allow parties to trade bilaterally and hedge against costly transmission congestion. 

In designing the WEIS, SPP leveraged existing constructs in the west and its experience successfully building and operating its own energy imbalance market from 2007-2014, after which the RTO introduced day-ahead unit commitment and other services in the transition to its current Integrated Marketplace.

An overview of the WEIS’ proposed scope and design is available in the Related Documents menu to the right.  

Governance and Stakeholder Involvement

For more than 75 years, SPP has distinguished itself as a stakeholder-driven organization that achieves its business objectives through consensus-building. While SPP’s independent board of directors provides ultimate oversight of the administration of the WEIS market, an open, transparent, and inclusive stakeholder process is a hallmark of our culture and business model. This same approach has been brought to the governance of the WEIS market to provide ample opportunities for stakeholder engagement and to ensure the market remains effective, efficient and competitive.

Stakeholders can stay informed of, and participate in, WEIS Market development through the Western Markets Working Group.

SPP’s Western Markets Working Group (WMWG) is the forum for customers of SPP’s western energy imbalance service market to engage in matters of WEIS Market related governance and strategy and with other stakeholders. Its meetings serve as an open forum for entities looking to learn about SPP or to have a say in the development of the WEIS market in the west.

Attendees may register on SPP.org for WMWG meetings, which may be attended in-person or by phone. Those interested in learning more about SPP’s provision of energy imbalance service in the west are encouraged to register and attend or to contact SPP’s customer relations department.

To stay updated on the WEIS Market, subscribe to the SPP WMWG Exploder. If you do not have an account, you may create one using the Create Account button at the top right of the page.

The Change Working Group (CWG) engages market participants and monitors market and SPP readiness for the western energy imbalance service market. The CWG makes project management and process improvement recommendations to SPP staff and/or the Western Markets Executive Committee.