The North American Electric Reliability Council (NERC) has completed a series of workshops on what it calls "electronic information systems" (EINs). The NERC workshops were held in response to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) "Mega-NOPR" of March 29, which contemplates opening the wholesale electric industry to competition. In one section of the NOPR, the FERC asks for comments on real-time information networks (RINs) (em electronic systems that would permit utilities that own transmission facilities to provide information to facilitate wholesale power trading via electronic bulletin boards.
NERC and the regional reliability councils will facilitate implementation of these systems, renamed EINs because "real-time" has so many other connotations within the industry. The NERC workshops focused on 1) the information needs of transmission users, 2) industrywide standards for reporting and using the information, and 3) compatibility with existing information systems. So far, NERC has compiled a "straw-man" document that outlines the information it believes should be included in the EINs.
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