News Release: November 10, 2014
FERC Accepts Proposal to Integrate WAPA, Basin Electric, Heartland as New SPP Members
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) today significantly expanded the Southwest Power Pool, Inc. (SPP) market by accepting SPP’s proposal to integrate Western Area Power Administration - Upper Great Plains Region, Basin Electric Power Cooperative and Heartland Consumers Power District into SPP.
Today’s Commission decision expands the geographic footprint of the regional power market to include a significant portion of the Upper Great Plains that spans the Eastern and Western Interconnections of the U.S. electric grid. According to Chairman Cheryl LaFleur, “Today’s order is a positive step that greatly expands customer access to organized markets, particularly in the upper-Midwest region, and increases efficiency and reliability for the newly combined market.”
The area of the Western Area Power Administration to be included in this new portion of SPP is known as Western-UGP, for Western-Upper Great Plains, which owns an extensive system of high-voltage transmission facilities and markets federally generated hydropower in the Pick-Sloan Missouri-Basin Program-Eastern Division of Western.
Basin Electric serves 2.8 million customers in territories covering approximately 540,000 square miles using nearly 2,100 miles of transmission lines and 70 switch yards.
Heartland is a public corporation and political subdivision of the State of South Dakota. It provides wholesale power to 28 municipalities in eastern South Dakota, southwest Minnesota, and northwest Iowa, to six South Dakota state agencies, and to one electric cooperative in South Dakota.
Together, these new SPP members provide the backbone of the bulk electric transmission system across seven states in the Upper Great Plains region consisting of approximately 9,500 miles of transmission lines.