IESO launches centralized wind forecasting

TORONTO, ONTARIO - Ontario leads the country with almost 1,200 MW of installed wind energy capacity and the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) is stepping up its efforts to improve the integration of wind energy into the province's power system.

Ontario's IESO announced that it will launch a centralized wind forecasting service on behalf of wind generators, expected to start in 2010.

"Ontario has been making great strides to install wind power in Ontario, increasing capacity this year by more than 50 per cent," says Paul Murphy, President and Chief Executive Officer of the IESO. "Due to the variable nature of wind generation, accurate wind forecasting is essential to the operation of an efficient and reliable power system.


Centralized wind forecasting will provide a number of benefits by:

• Improving forecast accuracy and consistency to further enhance system reliability;

• Supporting the expansion of wind generation within distribution service areas;

• Reducing the administrative burden on wind generators.

The IESO has also developed other initiatives to support the integration of wind energy into the provincial supply mix, including:

• Enhancing the IESO's forecast methods to account for wind output's higher performance during winter and shoulder seasons, when wind tends to be stronger;

• Pursuing new opportunities to refine existing reliability procedures and processes so that wind can take on an even greater role in meeting Ontario's electricity needs; and

• Introducing a web-based IESO Wind Tracker that graphically displays hourly wind output from the province's large-scale wind farms. Users can embed this tool on blogs and websites by copying a link available at

"Ontario has become the leading North American jurisdiction for green power due to our successes in wind power," says George Smitherman, Ontario's Deputy Premier and Minister of Energy and Infrastructure. "Today, I am pleased that the IESO and our energy partners are helping Ontario take another important step forward as we build a greener and reliable energy supply."


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