Imperial Irrigation District Approved as Project Sponsor for Policy-Driven Element

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A memorandum of understanding between California and the U.S. Department of the Interior will facilitate the development of transmission lines serving renewable energy in the state. Photos: California ISO
A memorandum of understanding between California and the U.S. Department of the Interior will facilitate the development of transmission lines serving renewable energy in the state.
Photos: California ISO

Cal ISO has approved Imperial Irrigation District as the project sponsor to finance, own, construct, operate and maintain the IV Policy Element, a policy-driven transmission line and collector station in the Imperial Valley area. The line and collector station will provide access to renewable generation in this area, assisting in meeting the state’s 33% renewables portfolio standard.

In the 2012/2013 transmission planning cycle, the ISO identified a need for the IV Policy Element with an estimated cost of $25 million. Because these are stand-alone facilities, and the ISO recognized that the IV Policy Element must be constructed in a relatively short timeline (by 2015 at the latest) due to generation projects in the area that require the transmission facilities to move forward with power purchase and interconnection agreement milestones, ISO management approved the IV Policy Element ahead of the 2012/2013 transmission plan approval. Following ISO management approval, the ISO initiated an accelerated competitive solicitation process for this transmission element.

On November 20, 2012, the ISO released a paper describing the IV Policy Element and the urgent need for the facilities.2 The project consists of a 230 kV collector substation (located approximately one mile north of the Imperial Valley substation) and a short (less than one mile) 230 kV transmission line connecting the collector substation to the IV substation. The transmission line and substation will not become network facilities that can be turned over to ISO operational control until IID completes its proposed upgrades to the IID “S” line (El Centro to IV) and loops it into the new collector substation. The ISO’s planning cost estimate for the IV
Policy Element was $25 million.

The ISO received applications from more than one qualified sponsor seeking to become the approved project sponsor of the IV Policy Element. The ISO conducted a comparative analysis to assess the degree to which each project sponsor met the qualification criteria under ISO tariff section 24.5.2.1, and selection factors under ISO tariff section 24.5.2.4.

 

The ISO has concluded its competitive solicitation process for the IV Policy Element and posted the selection report to its website at http://www.caiso.com/Documents/ImperialValleyPolicyElement-ProjectSponsorSelectionReport_Jul11_2013.pdf.

 

More information on the 2012-2013 transmission planning process is available at http://www.caiso.com/planning/Pages/TransmissionPlanning/2012-2013TransmissionPlanningProcess.aspx.