The New Mexico Public Regulation Commission (NMPRC) has unanimously approved an order pertaining to plans by PNM, the wholly owned New Mexico utility subsidiary of PNM Resources, to join the Western Energy Imbalance Market (EIM), operated by the California Independent System Operator. Through coordination with other EIM members, PNM expects to facilitate greater use of renewable resources in New Mexico.
PNM considered the costs and benefits of joining multiple regional organizations and determined that the EIM currently provides the greatest benefit to customers – namely, expanding opportunities for PNM to integrate additional renewable energy into its service territory. When renewable energy production on the PNM system exceeds the amounts needed by its customers, PNM will be able to sell this excess energy to other EIM members and reduce customer costs by the amount of these sales.
On Nov. 29, NMPRC also granted PNM unanimous approval of its 2019 Renewable Energy Act Plan, incorporating previously approved wind, solar and geothermal energy additions into customer rates. These renewable additions, which include 50 MW of solar facilities constructed in 2018, contribute to the 874 MW of existing and approved solar, wind and geothermal resources that PNM has planned to serve customers in 2021.
Last month, PNM also announced a new solar program designed to support governmental, tribal and large electric customers in meeting their sustainable energy goals.
PNM is planning to join the EIM in 2021 and expects to seek recovery for these costs in future general rate cases.