NEWS: Resource planning
E3 Assists PNM in Creation of 2020 IRP

Featured Image

March 3, 2021

Wind turbines at sunset

E3 assisted the Public Service Company of New Mexico (PNM) in the creation of their 2020 Integrated Resource Plan (IRP). The IRP marks an important milestone for PNM as it is their first plan since committing to achieve a carbon emissions-free portfolio by 2040. E3 worked alongside PNM’s resource planning team to develop the portfolio analysis, present material to stakeholders at several public advisory sessions, and write the final document, which was published on January 31. E3’s knowledge of resource planning best practices in the southwest and nationally helped the team design a wide analysis framework to account for key future uncertainties and challenges unique to the region.

The IRP focuses on two primary paths to 2040: a “Technology Neutral” investment scenario that considers all possible technologies for the generation portfolio, and a “No New Combustion” investment scenario that focuses on renewables and storage. Both paths prioritize minimizing cost to customers while meeting or exceeding reliability and environmental objectives. The IRP finds both paths to be viable, though with different projected costs and risks. The study finds the Technology Neutral scenario to be cheaper, but to carry risk associated with transitioning some new and existing gas combustion units to use 100% hydrogen or another zero-carbon fuel by 2040. The No New Combustion scenario avoids reliance on the developing market for zero-carbon fuels, but carries possible reliability risks associated with high fractions of resource adequacy coming from battery storage.

PNM’s historical and projected carbon emissions intensity, with key retirements and environmental goals highlighted

The final 2020-2040 IRP is available on the PNM website. E3’s Andrew DeBenedictis, Nick Schlag, Manohar Mogadali, and Arne Olson contributed to the project.

filed under: Resource planning