In September 2020, FERC issued Order 2222, paving the way for aggregated distributed energy resources (DERs) to compete alongside traditional power plants and other grid resources in wholesale markets. FERC’s expansive ruling opens the door to a wide array of technologies to participate. Aggregate resources can be located on a utility’s distribution system (or a subsystem) or on-site behind a customer’s meter.
Bundled technologies can include energy storage, on-site renewables, energy efficiency, distributed and backup generators, electric vehicles and their charging equipment, and other energy systems common in microgrids. There is no practical limitation on the number of distributed technologies that can be networked together in this manner, and combinations of generation and load modulation can be deployed simultaneously into one unified market offering.
Most notably, this new rule allows several distributed resources to aggregate to satisfy minimum size and performance requirements that they might not be able to attain individually, meaning aggregation can open access to any and all DERs located in competitive markets.
The order will officially take effect 90 days after publishing, and grid operators must then make compliance filings to the commission within 270 days of the order going into effect. Compliance plans are therefore due in about a year. They must propose a pathway for participation that is customized to each market’s needs and outlines their timely implementation of the order.