The United States could learn something from Texas’ electricity market, where interconnection times between power generators are the shortest in the nation – leading to more renewables deployment more quickly.
The ‘connect-and-manage’ reform option, a less restrictive interconnection approach, “could speed the deployment of resources in a way that can be managed after their integration with the [power] grid, leading to a larger volume of interconnected generation capacity without sacrificing reliability,” explains Tyler Norris, a doctoral student at Duke University’s Nicholas School of the Environment and former vice president of development at Cypress Creek Renewables.
On average, it takes four years for power generators to get approval to connect to the grid. Still, in the Texas electricity market, it takes only a year and a half between an interconnection request and its agreement. Thanks to this condensed approval process, the Electricity Reliability Council of Texas – the leading operator of the Texas grid – has installed more than 40 gigawatts (GW) worth of wind power, more than any other state, and close to 19 GW of solar energy, second only to the state of California.