Peakers are peaking power plants, also known as peaker plants, that generally run when there is a high demand — known as peak demand — for electricity. New York State has environmental regulations (by DEC) that will limit the use of peaker plants to reduce ozone levels. These are to be phased in between 2023-35. Fewer peakers put the electricity grid at risk during heat waves.
From the annual grid report by New York ISO:
“The CRP concluded that reliability margins will shrink in upcoming years due primarily to the planned unavailability of simple cycle combustion turbines that are impacted by the DEC’s Peaker Rule.”
Figure 17 shows the diminishing reliability margins (page 37). Looking at 95 degree heatwaves, New York City will have razor-thin margins beginning in 2025 before going negative a couple of years later. In the past 10 years New York City has gotten up to 100° three times.
“Looking ahead to 2040, the policy for an emissions-free electricity supply will require the development of new technologies. Substantial zero-emission despatchable resources will be required to fully replace fossil generation. Long-duration, dispatchable and emission-free resources will be necessary to maintain reliability and meet the objectives of the CLCPA. Resources with this combination of attributes are not commercially available at this time but will be critical to future grid reliability.”