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February 2019  •   Issue 18
The ISO is a nonprofit public benefit corporation that manages the bulk electric market, and the flow of electricity over the high-voltage, long-distance power lines for California and a small part of Nevada.

California Governor Newsom appoints ISO Board members

New Board Members

On Jan. 22, California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced three appointments to the California ISO Board of Governors.

Two new appointees were named: Severin Borenstein and Mary Leslie; and current member David Olsen was reappointed. All appointments are pending confirmation by the state Senate.

Borenstein, 61, of Orinda, has been professor at the University of California at Berkeley Haas School of Business since 1996. He was a professor of economics at the University of California at Davis from 1989 to 1996, and an assistant professor of economics at the University of Michigan from 1983 to 1989. The term expires Dec. 31, 2021.

Mary Leslie, 59, of Los Angeles, has been president of the Los Angeles Business Council since 2002 and was a commissioner at the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power from 2001 to 2003. Leslie served as deputy mayor to Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan from 1994 to 1995. She was also the deputy director for the U.S. Small Business Administration and executive director for the California Economic Development Commission. Leslie was the California finance director for Bill Clinton's presidential campaign in 1992. Her term expires Dec. 31, 2020.

David Olsen, 72, of Ventura, was the managing director for the Western Grid Group from 2003 to 2013 and served as coordinator for the California Renewable Energy Transmission Initiative for the California Energy Commission from 2007 to 2010. He was a coordinator for the Tehachapi Collaborative Study Group from 2005 to 2007. Olsen was president of Clipper Windpower Development from 2001 to 2003 and CEO at Patagonia Inc. from 1996 to 1999. This term expires Dec. 31, 2021.

For more information on the Board of Governors and to view biographies of ISO’s leadership, visit Our leadership.

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Western EIM benefits reach $564.88 million


The California ISO recently announced that fourth-quarter benefits for its Western Energy Imbalance Market (EIM) reached $62.57 million for the eight participating members. The total benefits for the EIM is $564.88 million since its launch in November 2014.

The Western EIM is a real-time, wholesale energy trading market that enables participants anywhere in the western U.S. to buy and sell energy when needed. The market currently has eight participants in eight western states.

The Western EIM continues to deliver added benefits of avoided renewable curtailments, while leveraging diverse resources from a larger pool of resources through the voluntary participation of participants.

The EIM benefits led to one participant, Arizona Public Service, to announce a rate reduction for its customers due in part to cost savings in the ISO market.

The market used 23,425 megawatt-hours of surplus renewable energy to supply consumer demand, replacing less clean energy sources.

Since the end of 2014, the effective use of carbon-free generation from the market has reduced CO2 emissions by a gross of 324,284 metric tons, the equivalent of removing the emissions of 68,179 passenger cars driven for one year.

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ISO welcomes Reliability Coordinator participants


The California ISO took a major step towards becoming the Reliability Coordinator in the West by recently finalizing agreements with 37 of 39 western electricity balancing authorities and transmission operators.

An RC has the highest level of authority and responsibility for the stability of the electric grid, and is required to comply with federal and regional grid reliability standards. It also can take measures to prevent or mitigate system emergencies in day-ahead or real-time operations.

“After a year of intensive planning and coordination, the ISO will now focus on developing technology and integrating systems to meet our July 1 implementation date,” said ISO CEO and president Steve Berberich.

In January 2018, the ISO announced plans to become its own RC and offer these services to other balancing authorities in the western United States, Canada, and Mexico. The existing RC provider, Peak Reliability, announced it will discontinue RC services at the end of 2019. The ISO has collaborated with entities, regulators, and other RC service providers to work toward its certification, and to create procedures for logistics and operations. The ISO is moving forward to complete the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) certification process led by the Western Electricity Coordinating Council (WECC), and start providing RC services to all of California, as well as Northern Mexico, by July 2019. The ISO will offer RC services to the remaining entities in the fourth quarter of 2019.

Visit Reliability Coordinator for more information and a list of entities with signed contracts for services.

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