The New York Independent System Operator (“NYISO”) recently issued a press release announcing its plans to undertake a new study of the potential for growth in the net metered (aka “customer sited”) solar sector to impact New York’s electricity grid The study is based upon the explosive growth in net metered solar projects in the State. Under the NY-Sun Program, New York experienced 300 MW of new net metered capacity (installed or under contract) in just the first two years after the program was launched in 2012. In total, the aggressive NY-Sun Program calls for installation of 3,000 MW of solar capacity by 2023.

The study will:

  • Develop and test solar forecasting tools and prepare 15-year forecasts of solar PV megawatts for each of the 11 load zones in New York State.
  • Research the experiences of other independent system operators and regional transmission organizations in addressing solar PV integration.
  • Evaluate solar generation variability and its impact on customer load served by the NYS electric systems.
  • Review operational impacts of various levels of solar and wind resources.

The report is expected to be released later in 2015. If successful, this type of planning and research will help support the distributed generation aspects of the future energy industry and regulatory paradigm being developed in the Public Service Commission’s Reforming the Energy Vision (“REV”) proceeding.