In the US Northeast, PJM Interconnection has made it easier for small generators of 2 MW or less to connect to the electric system in the world's largest wholesale electricity market. PJM obtained approval from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to replace numerous technical requirements imposed by utilities across the region it serves with a uniform standard. PJM oversees the high-voltage electric grid serving 51 million people in 13 states stretching from the Midwest to the Mid-Atlantic. It worked with utilities, the US Department of Energy, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and other interested stakeholders to develop the uniform interconnection standard for small generators, based on the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers' national standard. "In effect, we've removed a potential barrier to entry into the market," says PJM's Steven R Herling. "The new standard provides a transparent, one-stop reference for equipment manufacturers and small generation developers." Looking ahead, PJM has begun a similar process for the development of technical standards for small generators in the 2 MW to 10 MW range. It is also working with the states it serves to help them develop consistent interconnection standards for small generators that do not participate in the PJM markets.
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Senior Renewable Energy Analyst (WindGEMINI Product Lead) DNV GL Bristol (City Centre), City of Bristol