Alaska Regional Integrated Resource Plan Process
Chugach Electric, on behalf of the proposed Railbelt Reliability Council (RCC), commissioned Synapse to help develop a regional integrated resource plan (IRP) process to accompany its application to become the region’s Electric Reliability Organization. The stakeholder-informed process needed to be appropriate for an islanded, transmission-constrained system. It needed to include a 5-year action plan and accommodate Alaska’s existing regulations and standards. The plan would also need to address the Railbelt region’s unique differences from systems in the lower 48 states—particularly those related to transmission planning. In developing the process, Synapse considered the integration of distributed energy resources and their impact on a transmission and resource needs assessment, the coordination across the five load-serving entities in the Railbelt related to dispatch, unit commitment and energy exchange, and focus for winter peaking need concerns.
Synapse developed a high-level initial flowchart that depicts the resource planning process and the respective entities involved in each of the steps in the process. Working with the implementation subcommittee, we used the flowchart as a foundation for developing a draft process plan detailing each of the steps and entities involved. The RRC submitted the flowchart and the accompanying process as Exhibit E-8 in its March 25, 2022 application to the Regulatory Commission of Alaska.