Vote tallies here reflect individual votes, not the weight of the votes by market segment.
Affirmative votes are not recorded in these vote tallies. For additional details on the voting
record, please consult the Recommendation or Action Report, or the official vote tally if
available, as posted in the key documents.
Apr 28, 2015
ERCOT is often invited to participate in government-funded research projects that aim to solve a variety of problems affecting grid operations. While ERCOT could substantially benefit from many of these projects, ERCOT’s participation in them may be limited when disclosure of Protected Information would be required. The Protocols do not clearly authorize ERCOT to share Protected Information with research organizations or research project participants unless they happen to qualify under one of the explicit exceptions in Section 1.3.6, such as the “vendor or prospective vendor of goods and services” exception in paragraph (1)(h). But requiring ERCOT to incur some expense under the vendor exception as a condition for sharing Protected Information as part of a research project makes little sense when the organization sponsoring the research is willing to provide valuable information to ERCOT at no cost.
This Nodal Protocol Revision Request (NPRR) creates a research-related exception to the general prohibition against disclosure of Protected Information. Specifically, this NPRR allows ERCOT to disclose Protected Information to Entities involved in government-funded research projects where ERCOT has determined that (1) the disclosure of Protected Information would facilitate research that is expected to benefit ERCOT’s operations, (2) the value of the research facilitated by the disclosure of Protected Information is generally expected to exceed the risk of any improper use or disclosure of the Protected Information, and (3) the Entity (or Entities) to whom the information would be disclosed has no financial interest in any ERCOT Market Participant. If ERCOT determines that the research proposal meets this test, the research organization and any other project participants that would have access to Protected Information would be required to execute a Non-Disclosure Agreement that would forbid disclosure to any other entity, except as explicitly authorized in writing by ERCOT. ERCOT would also be required to issue a Market Notice upon entering such an arrangement.
This NPRR also explicitly authorizes ERCOT to share Protected Information with other ISOs/RTOs and electric utilities in other control areas when necessary to coordinate operations between Control Areas, including the synchronization and dispatch of DC Ties, Switchable Generation Resources, and the coordination of Block Load Transfers. The NPRR requires ERCOT to obtain the agreement of the ISO/RTO or utility not to disclose Protected Information as a condition for receiving that information.
This NPRR also deletes paragraph (2) of Section 1.3.6, which appears to have been mistakenly separated from the language in current paragraph (1)(j) in the initial version of the Nodal Protocols in March 2005. Comments submitted in PRR 461, Confidentiality Exceptions for Reliability Analysis, in 2003 indicate that this language was intended to ensure that ERCOT would not disclose Resource-specific output, availability, and other data to Market Participants outside of task forces and working groups within ten days of the relevant Operating Day. However, this restriction was superseded by the specific disclosure timelines adopted by the Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUCT) in 2006 in P.U.C. Substantive Rule 25.505, Resource Adequacy in the Electric Reliability Council of Texas Power Region. ERCOT therefore proposes to delete this language.
Addresses current operational issues