Colorado Springs Utilities became the ninth power company to actively join Southwest Power Pool’s western electricity market Aug. 1, looking to meet real-time demand with coordinated and cheaper wholesale power.
SPP, a nonprofit regional transmission organization chartered by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to operate the electric grid and manage its markets across a swath of 17 central and western states, has its headquarters in Little Rock.
By joining the western market, Colorado Springs Utilities will be poised for access to the “lowest-cost generating resources available in the market at any given minute,” according to a news release from SPP.
“Participation in the Western Energy Imbalance Service Market is a significant step in our pursuit of clean energy goals, and sends a strong signal that we’re doing everything possible to secure a reliable electric grid and reduce energy-related costs for our customers,” Colorado Springs Utilities CEO Aram Benyamin said in a statement. “Considering the volatile nature of today’s energy market, having access to increased market intelligence and the ability to quickly integrate different utilities’ generating resources into our system provides unparalleled to our community.”
The utility joins eight other western utilities already in the market, with three more scheduled to join in April 2023 — Xcel Energy —Colorado, Platte River Power Authority and Black Hills Colorado Electric LLC.
“It’s encouraging to see the continued growth of SPP’s energy services in the west,” SPP Senior Vice President of Operations Bruce Rew said in the release. “Organized markets save utilities and their customers money, make the delivery of electricity to customers more reliable, and help utilities and states achieve clean energy goals. We’re excited that in addition to Colorado Springs Utilities, numerous other organizations are investigating WEIS participation.”