Wednesday, October 6, 2021
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What is a System-Backed Capacity Import Resource?

System-Backed Capacity Import Resources are one of the newer resource classes eligible to participate in the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO)'s Capacity Auction. This raises the question: What is a System-Backed Capacity Import Resource?

This resource type comprises different forms of capacity received from neighbouring jurisdictions such as Manitoba or a neighbouring System Operator like Hydro Quebec. This form of imported capacity is considered fully reliable as it is guaranteed by the external power system (the exporting jurisdiction) to be available to meet Ontario's resource adequacy needs - hence "system-backed." This means that the exporting jurisdiction has guaranteed the capacity will reach the intertie even if there is congestion on the transmission lines between the capacity source and the intertie. These resources are considered more secure than generator-backed resources due to this guarantee and the fact that the imported capacity only represents a small portion of the overall external control area's total generation capacity.

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