Critics say PJM pricing system could “prop up” nuclear and coal-fired plants in Ohio

Proposed changes to PJM Interconnection’s energy pricing system “could reward coal and nuclear plants in Ohio” and raise prices for consumers, critics say, according to a recent MidwestEnergyNews.com article. PJM’s plan “would basically let coal and nuclear power plants take part in the process for setting the price of electricity in the wholesale market,” something they currently are not permitted to do “because they can’t ramp up quickly and generally must produce large chunks of electricity, rather than incremental amounts,” according to the article. The formula PJM has been using for the past couple decades “looks at both where a resource is and what its costs are for supplying increments of electricity needed in the region.” In a November 15 report, PJM noted “some generation sources, such as wind, can now have a zero marginal cost,” while the falling price of natural gas also lowers marginal costs for plants that use it for fuel. Stu Bresler, PJM vice president, said the “new pricing plan would be ‘more reflective of all the costs that are necessary to serve the demands on the system.’” For more, read the full article.

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