NPCC’s Summer Reliability Assessment Forecasts Adequate Electricity Supplies

Lower electricity demand from pandemic further reduces likelihood of reliability issues

(The Assessment covers New York, New England and Eastern Canada)

NEW YORK--()--Northeast Power Coordinating Council, Inc.’s (NPCC’s) annual reliability assessment forecasts the NPCC Region will have an adequate supply of electricity this summer. The overall NPCC coincident electricity summer peak demand is not expected to be higher than 104,000 megawatts (MW), approximately the same as last summer.

After accounting for new resources, retirements and transmission constraints, the spare operable capacity (capacity over and above reserve requirements) for NPCC during the summer period is estimated to be sizable – ranging from 13,000 MW to nearly 21,000 MW.

“NPCC does not anticipate reliability issues for the upcoming summer. Forecasts indicate adequate transmission capability and sufficient capacity margins to meet peak demand and required operating reserves,” said Edward Schwerdt, President and CEO of NPCC.

For New York State, New England and Ontario, an adequate supply of electricity is forecast for this summer. The winter peaking Québec and Canadian Maritime Provinces are expected to meet forecasted electricity demand by a wide margin.

As a result of the economic shutdown and other restrictions to contain COVID-19, there have been declines in system demand throughout the NPCC Region. “A continuation of this decrease would likely lower summer peak demand and further increase the forecasted spare operable capacity. This in turn could help counteract potential reliability impacts caused by the COVID-19 pandemic,” added Schwerdt.

The scenarios considered in the assessment bracket plausible COVID-19 impacts on reliable grid operations, such as work force disruptions, equipment and fuel supply interruptions and deferred maintenance.

However, even under pandemic conditions, wide-spread and prolonged heat waves with high humidity and temperatures will remain the primary drivers of system demand this summer.

Established operating procedures are still available to maintain reliability and keep electricity supplies and demand in balance if needed.

The summer reliability assessment considered an array of severe system conditions including the impacts of: 1) extended unit maintenance; 2) reductions in demand-response programs; 3) reductions in the ability to import power from neighboring Regions; 4) transmission constraints; and 5) extreme weather characterized by widespread and prolonged heat waves with high humidity and near-record temperatures. The first four of these system conditions act to mitigate potential reliability concerns resulting from the COVID-19 economic shutdown and recovery period.

NPCC has implemented a number of operating procedures to address pandemic impacts on the bulk power system and will continue to assess the evolving situation to address reliability impacts for this summer.

About NPCC

NPCC is one of six Regional Entities located throughout the United States, Canada and portions of Mexico that, in concert with the North American Electric Reliability Corporation, seek to assure a highly reliable, resilient, and secure North American bulk power system through the effective and efficient identification, reduction, and mitigation of reliability risks. NPCC’s geographic area includes the state of New York, the six New England states, Ontario, Québec, and the Canadian Maritime Provinces of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. Overall, NPCC covers an area of nearly 1.2 million square miles, populated by approximately 56 million people.

NPCC is responsible for promoting and enhancing the reliability of the international, interconnected bulk power system in Northeastern North America. NPCC carries out its mission through: (i) the development of regional reliability standards and compliance assessment and enforcement of continent-wide and regional reliability standards, coordination of system planning, design and operations, and assessment of reliability, and (ii) the establishment of Regionally-specific criteria and monitoring and enforcement of compliance with such criteria.


Northeast Power Coordinating Council, Inc.
Stephen Allen, 617-640-6522

Release Summary

Adequate electricity supplies expected this summer for New York, New England and Eastern Canada


Northeast Power Coordinating Council, Inc.
Stephen Allen, 617-640-6522