On April 27, 2022, members of the PJM Interconnection, L.L.C. (“PJM”) Members Committed voted in favor of a suite of tariff reforms that PJM states will revamp and improve its generator interconnection process. In a press release issued that same day, PJM stated that the changes will create a faster, more efficient interconnection process, allowing PJM to better handle the influx of interconnection requests PJM has seen in recent years and will continue seeing into the future. In a press release dated April 28, 2022, PJM reported that it plans to file the proposal with FERC in May 2022.
According to PJM, the number of projects entering the New Services Queue has nearly tripled over the past four years as a result of the rapid growth in renewable generation development. PJM entered 2022 with nearly 2,500 projects under study representing approximately 225,000 proposed megawatts. 95% of those megawatts under study come from renewable, storage, or hybrid resources.
PJM reports that its interconnection reform proposal will include the following elements, among others:
- Projects will be addressed on a first-ready, first-served basis rather than on a first come, first-served basis.
- Improvements to procedures around required permitting and site control.
- Simplified analysis of the cost responsibility of individual projects by clustering projects within the same cycle and reducing the number of restudies for project changes.
- Projects that don’t contribute to the need for network upgrades and/or don’t need facilities studies will be able to proceed to a final agreement early.
The interconnection queue reform proposal will also include a two-year transition period to work through the current backlog by prioritizing more than 1,200 projects submitted before 2021. PJM reports that its proposed transition process will also include a “fast lane” which would prioritize about 450 projects.
PJM’s April 28, 2022 press release is available here.