Despite a recent delay, the stage
appears set for online trading
in electric transmission capacity.
THIS IS ONLY A TEST (EM FOR NOW.
But come January, if all goes well, the OASIS program will start up in real time, with customers venturing onto the Internet to place reservations for capacity on the nation's electric transmission grid.
For a decade that began with industry opposition to open transmission, the change is remarkable. Open access? Just say "node."
The test begins December 2, 1996, as hundreds of utilities begin marketing transmission capacity on an experimental basis through their Open-access Same-time Information System (OASIS). It's the real-time startup for Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) Order 889, issued last spring, and for a "new era" for transmission providers and marketers. The order requires utilities to provide transmission customers with electronic access to available capacity, tariffs, and other information.
The test was slated to begin November 1, but in late September the FERC delayed the startup for a month to allow transmission owners, OASIS vendors, and others to respond to changes proposed by the "How Working Group," and a subsequent FERC order issuing revised standards and protocols. See, OASIS and Standards of Conduct, FERC Dkt. No. RM95-9-000, Sept. 20, 1996 (Order Granting Request for Extension of Time).