North American Electric Reliability Corporation
Board Focuses on Strategic Direction of E-ISAC, ERO Enterprise and Emerging Risks

May 16, 2017

The North American Electric Reliability Corporation had its quarterly Board of Trustees meeting on May 11. The meeting focused on NERC's long-term strategic efforts and emerging risks. Participants were welcomed to St. Louis by Warner Baxter, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Ameren Corporation, who spoke about Ameren's mission, vision and strategy to provide reliable service to their customers in Missouri and Illinois.

Roy Thilly, NERC's Board chair, gave an update on the Board's long-term planning session and meeting with the Regional Board officers noting that it continues to provide a positive forum for dialogue on key reliability matters facing NERC and the Regions.

In other remarks, Patricia Hoffman, acting assistant secretary at the Department of Energy, provided an overview of the activities being undertaken by DOE, including security, resiliency and recovery efforts. Gerry Cauley, president and chief executive officer, highlighted ongoing efforts of NERC and Regional senior leadership, to develop a long-term strategy. The plan reflects priorities from the Reliability Issues Steering Committee and considers the changing energy landscape. The effort will identify, prioritize and assure effective and efficient mitigation of risks to the reliability and security of the North American grid.

"We must ensure that we remain focused on emerging reliability risks and stay relevant as the world around us changes," Cauley said. "We will continue to adapt and be effective, efficient and reliability-focused. With new challenges and new technology, we must be more forward-looking and collaborative. I urge everyone to be a part of the ongoing dialogue."

John McAvoy, chair of the Electricity Subsector Coordinating Council's Member Executive Committee, addressed the Board in support of the E-ISAC Long-Term Strategic Plan, saying security is an integral part of industry operations and we live in a dynamic threat environment. In order to continue evolving, we must improve cross-sector collaboration and information sharing. The long-term plan will help the E-ISAC reach its goals, he added.

The E-ISAC Long-Term Strategic Plan, which was developed working closely with NERC leadership and the Member Executive Committee, builds on the ESCC's 2015 recommendations and discusses improvements needed in 2017 to address current threats, a look at the mid-term range of 2018-2022 to address emerging threats, and what the E-ISAC might look like beyond 2023 if the forecasted issues continue to develop. The Board accepted the plan.

In other action, the Board approved amendments to NERC's Rules of Procedure Sections 600 and 900. After 10 years as the Electric Reliability Organization, NERC is taking a comprehensive review of the Rules of Procedure to modernize and align the language with current practices. The revisions to Sections 600 and 900 seek to better clarify the responsibilities and scope of the Personnel Certification Program, the Training and Education Program and the Continuing Education Program; and to streamline the ROP by eliminating detailed programmatic requirements duplicated in existing program manuals.

The Board also received several updates, including:

  • Summer Reliability Assessment. The assessment identifies potential summer resource deficiencies and potential operating reliability concerns. It also identifies peak electricity demand and supply changes, as well as highlights any unique regional challenges. The report is expected to be published at the end of the month.
  • 2017 State of Reliability. This report is prepared annually to review and assess the state of reliability of the North American bulk power system to provide an integrated view of reliability performance and identify potential reliability issues. The key findings and recommendations serve as the technical foundation for NERC's risk-informed efforts addressing reliability performance and serve as key inputs to the annual ERO Reliability Risk Priorities report from the Reliability Issues Steering Committee. The report is expected to be published in mid-June.
  • Mexico Next Steps. A memorandum of understanding was signed between NERC and Mexican governmental authorities on March 8. A meeting of the Steering Group, which is made up of staff from the Comisión Reguladora de Energía (CRE), Centro Nacional de Control de Energía (CENACE) and NERC, is planned for May 30 to establish implementation priorities and next steps, including Mexican participation in NERC governance and funding.

Board presentations may be found by clicking here. The next Board of Trustees meeting is August 10 in Ottawa, Canada.

For more information:

North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC)

3353 Peachtree Road, NE Suite 600 North Tower
Atlanta, Georgia
United States, 30326

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