This video provides a quick, 10 minute introduction to the guardian of our grid, the New York Independent System Operator or NYISO.

NYISO is an Independent, non profit organization that uses rules and regulations to ensure reliability and integrity so that our grid performs flawlessly to deliver electricity to our homes and businesses. While we still have ocassional outages, it is not because of a lack of electricity. It is usually caused by damaged utility lines or transformer problems.

NYISO has a 10 year plan for how they think the grid will grow and develop. Every two years they issue a report on the problems they are encountering in meeting their goals. In alternate years they issue a reliability report and how they are addressing the problems that have been identified. Transparency in the way they operate is an important part of their business ethic.

One of their most important reports is Power Trends. It is a technical and thorough description of what is happening with the grid and what may happen in the near future. Another important report is The Gold Book. Generating companies call it the Gold Book, both for its color and for the opportunities it presents for making large scale, profitable investments.

While NYISO is generally agnostic about how electricity is generated, they are experimenting with large scale wind and solar.They have found that while wind is variable, it is quite predictable. Electricity from wind is now factored into demand. NYISO is also constructing the largest battery storage facility in the Northeast.

Right now their prediction is for a continuing decline in the wholesale price of electricity. They state that we have a surplus of power and no additional generation is needed. despite the fact that 2,000 MW of electricity is being phased out of the market with the closing of Indian Point.

Their website is well designed, extremely useful and easy to navigate. (Link here please)

How electricity is bought and sold in our competitive market

Though not included in this video the following information may be of interest to those learning about the grid.

Much of our electricity is made available through a series of competitive auctions where utilities and large users put in a request for a certain number of megawatts of electricity and generators bid to fill the requests. Once the requests are filled NYSIO operators dispatch it and providers bill the buyers.There are day-ahead markets, 15 minutes ahead markets and 5-minute ahead markets.

Large users, such as the New York Power Authority, and Con Ed frequently prefer to use long term contracts to fill their basic needs and turn to the auctions only to meet excess demands.