Connection Project Reporting Changes
The AESO is proposing to make several enhancements to the existing AESO Connection Project List, and to provide stakeholders with a new, interactive online map of the active Connection projects in Alberta. The AESO is seeking stakeholder feedback on the advancement of these proposed changes.
Prototypes of the project list and map have been developed using a representative set of projects, and can be found below, along with additional supporting materials. Stakeholder feedback received on the Project list and map can found below. We appreciate your time and effort in providing feedback on these changes and anticipate releasing the enhanced project list and map in Q1 2021.
The AESO Connection Project List and Queue were introduced in 2010 with the newly implemented Connection Process. The project list included all active Connection projects and was implemented to provide stakeholders with transparency of the requests for system access service in the province. The queue included only those projects that had passed Gate 2 of the process, which at the time was the criteria for including projects in connection and planning studies and forecasts, and was used for remedial action scheme (RAS) purposes.
Since that time, both the project list and queue have remained largely the same, while some AESO practices have evolved; Gate 2 is no longer used as the criteria for project inclusion, and RAS is now a function of reliability mitigation and market impact. As such, the queue no longer serves its original intended objectives, and creates confusion for stakeholders as to its current purpose. The AESO has therefore determined that the project list and queue will be merged into a single, enhanced project list.
To effectively implement this change, the AESO collected feedback from stakeholders on their use of the project list and queue through various channels, including at stakeholder sessions, interactions with project team members, and a stakeholder survey conducted in February 2020. This feedback has been evaluated, and in response the AESO is proposing a number of enhancements to the project list for further comment.
The AESO is proposing the following changes to the project list. More information on individual columns in the proposed project list can be found in the new guide.
- Removal of “Applied On” and “Entered Queue” date columns
- The AESO will be removing these fields as they do not serve a reporting purpose in the current AESO Connection Process.
- Grouping projects by status categories
- The proposed project list would group projects by their current status, including “Active”, “On Hold”, “ISD Under Review”, “Cancelled” and “Energized”. This status would replace the date in the ISD column for all but “Active” and “Energized” projects. See the ISD Under Review section for more information about this status. This information is not currently available on the project list.
- This change is proposed to provide additional visibility on the progress of a project towards the in-service date, and to remove in-service dates which are no longer accurate or are being re-evaluated. This change is intended to improve the accuracy of the in-service dates that are provided on the project list.
- Inclusion column
- Projects on the list would have an “Inclusion” field, which will indicate if the project has met the AESO’s project inclusion criteria for being included in other project studies. This information is not currently available on the project list.
- This change is proposed to provide additional information on the progress of a project, indicating when the AESO has deemed the project to have sufficient certainty that it will proceed to energization.
- Energization groupings
- Projects that have staged energizations would show the capacity and in-service date of those energizations as additional columns on the same project line item. Currently multiple energizations are listed as separate project line items with a subproject identifier (e.g. Project 1234 Subproject 2), and individual energizations are removed once they are in service.
- This change is proposed to keep all project information grouped in one line item on the project list. This will provide a complete picture of staged projects through their entire lifecycle, rather than presenting energizations individually.
- Recently cancelled and energized
- The project list would include projects that have energized or cancelled within the previous three months. Currently these projects are removed from the list once they have energized or cancelled.
- This change is proposed to provide more visibility of why projects no longer appear on the project list, and to highlight recent activity.
- Project list guide
- A guide has been created to provide details on the information that would be provided in the list, including links to relevant resources.
- This guide is proposed to improve clarity on the information being published.
- Addition of project map
- In addition to the improved project list, the AESO is proposing to make project information available in an interactive online map. The map would allow users to filter and search by project details, and make use of standard geographic map functionality. The information displayed on the map would be updated monthly along with the project list.
- A guide has also been created to support stakeholders in using the map.
- Removal of “Applied On” and “Entered Queue” date columns
ISD Under Review Process
In certain situations, it may become apparent that the in-service date (ISD) on the project list for a project is not achievable. The AESO, Market Participant, TFO and GFO, if applicable, (the “Project Team”) will work together to revise the project schedule and determine a new ISD.
Currently the ISD of the project remains unchanged on the posted project list until the AESO receives and approves a project change proposal. This has led to instances where the ISD on the project list is clearly not achievable given the stage and status of the project. The result is a lack of confidence and transparency in the ISDs provided on the project list.
The AESO is proposing a new process whereby projects in the scenario described above would be placed in an “ISD Under Review” category on the project list until a new ISD has been determined. This process is intended to increase the accuracy and reliability of the ISDs in the project list.
The proposed process would work as follows:
- A member of the Project Team identifies a challenge in meeting the proposed ISD.
- The Project Team would discuss the schedule, and determine if the current ISD was still achievable or needed to be re-evaluated.
- If the ISD needed to be re-evaluated, the Project Team would have 30 calendar days to agree upon a new ISD, and submit and approve a project change proposal.
- If a new ISD is agreed to in this time, it would appear on the next published project list
- If a new ISD is not agreed to in this time, the project would be placed in the “ISD Under Review” category on the next published project list.
- Projects that have been categorized as “ISD Under Review” on the project list would remain in that category until a new ISD is agreed upon, at which time the project returns to the “Active” status category in the next published project list with the updated ISD.
Note: Project work would continue for projects with an “ISD Under Review” status.
- Stakeholder comments on proposed Project List and Map
Connection Project Reporting
The AESO reports on all in-progress Connection projects with an accepted system access service request, as well as recently energized and cancelled projects. This includes all projects following the Connection Process, Behind the Fence Process, or Contract Process. For more information on the AESO Connection Process please see Connecting to the grid
Project list and map updated 2020-09-10