Variable renewablse, Renewable energy, Energy imbalance market, EIM, Renewable integration, Electricity markets, Renewable grid integration
Compared to other regions of the United States, the Western electric grid is fragmented and balkanized, due to lack of regional market coordination. As the West anticipates the growth of renewable energy, there is an evident need for regional market interconnection. The Energy Imbalance Market (EIM) is the first sub-hourly regional power-trading market in the West, allowing Western utilities to buy and sell electricity across the diverse geographic region (EIM, 2018a). By tapping into the flexibility and diversity of regional production profiles, the EIM reduces the variability and intermittency of renewable power. According to the 2017 quarterly benefits report, from market inception in 2014 through December 2017, the Energy Imbalance Market reports $288.44 million in total market integration benefits (Figure 1). Benefits include enhanced grid reliability, higher electricity dispatch efficiency, increased renewable power integration, reduced renewable curtailment, and reduced flexibility ramping reserves.
Tarr, Kristen E., "The Energy Imbalance Market: Environmental Benefits of Regional Market Integration in the West" (2018). WWU Honors Program Senior Projects. 74.
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