[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 59 (Thursday, March 27, 2014)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 17077-17082]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-06591]


=======================================================================
-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission

18 CFR Part 40

[Docket No. RM13-19-000, RM14-3-000]


Generator Relay Loadability and Revised Transmission Relay 
Loadability Reliability Standards

AGENCY: Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: Pursuant to section 215 of the Federal Power Act, the 
Commission proposes to approve a new Reliability Standard, PRC-025-1 
(Generator Relay Loadability), submitted by the North American Electric 
Reliability Corporation (NERC), the Commission-approved Electric 
Reliability Organization. In addition, the Commission proposes to 
approve Reliability Standard PRC-023-3 (Transmission Relay 
Loadability), also submitted by NERC, which revises a currently-
effective standard pertaining to transmission relay loadability.

DATES: Comments are due April 28, 2014.

ADDRESSES: Comments, identified by docket number, may be filed in the 
following ways:
     Electronic Filing through http://www.ferc.gov. Documents 
created electronically using word processing software should be filed 
in native applications or print-to-PDF format and not in a scanned 
format.
     Mail/Hand Delivery: Those unable to file electronically 
may mail or hand-deliver comments to: Federal Energy Regulatory 
Commission, Secretary of the Commission, 888 First Street NE., 
Washington, DC 20426.
    Instructions: For detailed instructions on submitting comments and 
additional information on the rulemaking process, see the Comment 
Procedures Section of this document.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: 
Syed Ahmad (Technical Information), Office of Electric Reliability, 
Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, 
DC 20426, (202) 502-8718, syed.ahmad@ferc.gov.
Julie Greenisen (Legal Information), Office of the General Counsel, 
Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, 
DC 20426, (202) 502-6362, julie.greenisen@ferc.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

146 FERC ] 61,189

Before Commissioners: Cheryl A. LaFleur, Acting Chairman; Philip D. 
Moeller, John R. Norris, and Tony Clark.

(Issued March 20, 2014)

    1. Pursuant to section 215 of the Federal Power Act (FPA),\1\ the 
Commission proposes to approve a new Reliability Standard, PRC-025-1 
(Generator Relay Loadability), submitted by the North American Electric 
Reliability Corporation (NERC). In addition, the Commission proposes to 
approve Reliability Standard PRC-023-3 (Transmission Relay 
Loadability), also submitted by NERC, which revises a currently-
effective standard pertaining to transmission relay loadability.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ 16 U.S.C. 824o (2012).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    2. NERC developed proposed Reliability Standard PRC-025-1 in 
response to certain Commission directives issued in Order No. 733,\2\ 
in which the Commission approved an initial version of a Reliability 
Standard governing transmission relay loadability. We believe that the 
proposed new standard on generator relay loadability, Reliability 
Standard PRC-025-1, will serve to enhance reliability by imposing 
mandatory requirements governing generator relay loadability, thereby 
reducing the likelihood of premature or unnecessary tripping of 
generators during system disturbances. In addition, we believe that the 
proposed revisions to PRC-023-2 are appropriate in that they clarify 
the applicability of the two standards governing relay loadability 
(PRC-025-1 and PRC-023-3), and prevent potential compliance overlap due 
to inconsistencies. Finally, we propose to approve the violation risk 
factors and violation severity levels as proposed for PRC-025-1, as 
well as the proposed implementation plans for the two standards.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \2\ Transmission Relay Loadability Reliability Standard, Order 
No. 733, 130 FERC ] 61,221 (2010) (Order No. 733); order on reh'g 
and clarification, Order No. 733-A, 134 FERC ] 61,127; clarified, 
Order No. 733-B, 136 FERC ] 61,185 (2011).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

I. Background

A. Regulatory Background

    3. Section 215 of the FPA requires a Commission-certified Electric 
Reliability Organization (ERO) to develop mandatory and enforceable 
Reliability Standards, subject to Commission review and approval.\3\ 
Once approved, the Reliability Standards may be enforced by the ERO 
subject to Commission oversight, or by the Commission independently.\4\ 
In 2006, the Commission certified NERC as the ERO pursuant to FPA 
section 215.\5\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \3\ 16 U.S.C. 824o(c) and (d).
    \4\ See id. at 824o(e).
    \5\ North American Electric Reliability Corp., 116 FERC ] 
61,062, order on reh'g & compliance, 117 FERC ] 61,126 (2006), aff'd 
sub nom., Alcoa, Inc. v. FERC, 564 F.3d 1342 (D.C. Cir. 2009).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

B. Relay Protection Systems

    4. Protective relays are devices that detect and initiate the 
removal of faults on an electric system.\6\ They are designed to read 
electrical measurements, such as current, voltage, and frequency, and 
can be set to recognize certain measurements as indicating a fault. 
When a protective relay detects a fault on an element of the system 
under its protection, it sends a signal to an interrupting device, such 
as a circuit breaker, to disconnect the element from the rest of the 
system. Impedance relays, which are the most common type of relays used 
to protect transmission lines, continuously measure voltage and current 
on the protected transmission line and operate when the measured 
magnitude and

[[Page 17078]]

phase angle of the impedance (voltage/current) falls within the 
settings of the relay.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \6\ A ``fault'' is defined in the NERC Glossary of Terms used in 
Reliability Standards as ``[a]n event occurring on an electric 
system such as a short circuit, a broken wire, or an intermittent 
connection.''
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

C. Development of Reliability Standards on Relay Loadability

    5. Following the August 2003 blackout that affected parts of the 
Midwest, the Northeast, and Ontario, Canada, NERC and the U.S.-Canada 
Power System Outage Task Force (Task Force) concluded that a 
substantial number of transmission lines disconnected during the 
blackout when load-responsive phase-protection backup distance and 
phase relays operated unnecessarily, i.e. under non-fault conditions. 
Although these relays operated according to their settings, the Task 
Force determined that the operation of these relays for non-fault 
conditions contributed to cascading outages at the start of the 
blackout and accelerated the geographic spread of the cascade.\7\ 
Seeking to prevent or minimize the scope of future blackouts, both NERC 
and the Task Force developed recommendations to ensure that these types 
of protective relays do not contribute to future blackouts.\8\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \7\ U.S.-Canada Power System Outage Task Force, Final Report on 
the August 14, 2003 Blackout in the United States and Canada: Causes 
and Recommendations, at 80 (2004) (Final Blackout Report).
    \8\ See Final Blackout Report, Recommendation 21A; North 
American Electric Reliability Council, August 14, 2003 Blackout: 
NERC Actions to Prevent and Mitigate the Impacts of Future Cascading 
Blackouts, at 13 and Recommendation 8a (2004).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    6. NERC developed Reliability Standard PRC-023-1 (Transmission 
Relay Loadability) to address these recommendations, and submitted it 
for Commission approval under FPA section 215. On March 10, 2010, in 
Order No. 733, the Commission approved Reliability Standard PRC-023-
1.\9\ In addition, the Commission directed NERC to (1) make certain 
modifications to the Reliability Standard, (2) submit a timeline for 
the development of a new Reliability Standard to address generator 
protective relay loadability, and (3) develop a new Reliability 
Standard addressing the issue of protective relay operation during 
stable power swings.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \9\ Order No. 733, 130 FERC ] 61,221.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

D. NERC Petition and Proposed Standards PRC-025-1 and PRC-023-3

1. Proposed Reliability Standard PRC-025-1
    7. On September 30, 2013, NERC submitted a petition seeking 
approval of Reliability Standard PRC-025-1 (Generator Relay 
Loadability).\10\ NERC states in its petition that the proposed 
standard ``is designed to prevent generator tripping when conditions do 
not pose a direct risk to the generator and associated equipment and 
will reduce the risk of unnecessary generator tripping--events that 
increase the severity of the disturbance.'' \11\ NERC further states 
that the proposed standard is intended to address the second part of 
the Commission's Order No. 733 directives, requiring development of a 
standard governing generator protective relay loadability.\12\ NERC 
notes that it addressed the first Order No. 733 directive, requiring 
modification of PRC-023-1, through its revised standard PRC-023-2 
(currently in effect).\13\ NERC indicates that it is addressing the 
third portion of the Order No. 733 directives, relay operation during 
stable power swings, as part of a separate phase of the project.\14\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \10\ Proposed Reliability Standards PRC-025-1 and PRC-023-3 are 
not attached to this Notice of Proposed Rulemaking. The complete 
texts of these proposed Reliability Standards are available on the 
Commission's eLibrary document retrieval system in Docket Nos. RM13-
19-000 and RM14-3-000, and are posted on NERC's Web site, available 
at: http://www.nerc.com.
    \11\ Petition of the North American Electric Reliability Corp. 
for Approval of Proposed Reliability Standard PRC-025-1 (Generator 
Relay Loadability), Docket No. RM13-19-000, at 4 (Sept. 30, 2013) 
(Sept. 30 Petition or Petition). NERC requested that the Commission 
delay its consideration of PRC-025-1 until NERC could finalize and 
submit for approval certain related revisions to its transmission 
relay loadability standard, PRC-023-2. Those revisions were 
submitted on Dec. 17, 2013, as discussed further below.
    \12\ See id. at 8.
    \13\ Id. (citing Transmission Relay Loadability Reliability 
Standard, Order No. 759, 138 FERC ] 61,197 (2012)).
    \14\ Id. NERC indicated that this third phase of its response to 
Order No. 733 is tentatively scheduled to be completed in December 
2014. Id.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    8. The stated purpose of PRC-025-1 is ``[t]o set load-responsive 
protective relays associated with generation Facilities at a level to 
prevent unnecessary tripping of generators during a system disturbance 
for conditions that do not pose a risk of damage to the associated 
equipment.'' \15\ Proposed Reliability Standard PRC-025-1 would apply 
to any generator owner, transmission owner, or distribution provider 
``that applies load-responsive protective relays at the terminals of 
the Elements listed in 3.2, Facilities.'' \16\ ``Facilities,'' in turn, 
are defined in section 3.2 of the proposed standard as:
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \15\ Sept. 30 Petition, Ex. A at 3. While NERC has not proposed 
a definition for the term ``load-responsive protective relays,'' 
Attachment A of existing Reliability Standard PRC-023-2, which also 
uses the term ``load-responsive protective relays'' states that the 
standard includes ``any protective functions which could trip with 
or without time delay, on load current.'' NERC Reliability Standard 
PRC-023-2, available at http://www.nerc.com/_layouts/PrintStandard.aspx?standardnumber=PRC-023-2&title=Transmission%20Relay%20Loadability&jurisdiction=United%20States.
    \16\ Sept. 30 Petition, Ex. A at 3. NERC further explains that 
the standard should ``include all load-responsive protective relays 
that are affected by increased generator output in response to 
system disturbances.'' Sept. 30 Petition, Ex. A at 25 (Guidelines 
and Technical Basis) (hereinafter Guidelines).

    Elements associated with Bulk Electric System (BES) generating 
units and generating plants, including those * * * identified as 
Blackstart Resources in the Transmission Operator's system 
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
restoration plan:

    3.2.1 Generating unit(s).
    3.2.2 Generator step-up (i.e., GSU) transformer(s).
    3.2.3 Unit auxiliary transformer(s) (UAT) that supply overall 
auxiliary power necessary to keep generating unit(s) online.
    3.2.4 Elements that connect the GSU transformer(s) to the 
Transmission system that are used exclusively to export energy 
directly from a BES generating unit or generating plant. Elements 
may also supply generating plant loads.
    3.2.5 Elements utilized in the aggregation of dispersed power 
producing resources.

    9. Proposed Reliability Standard PRC-025-1 has only one 
requirement, that each applicable entity ``shall apply settings that 
are in accordance with PRC-025-1--Attachment 1: Relay Settings, on each 
load-responsive protective relay while maintaining reliable fault 
protection.'' \17\ The relay setting options are defined in Table 1 of 
Attachment 1, and include the specific bus voltage and other inputs to 
be used depending on the application (e.g., synchronous or asynchronous 
generator, generator step-up transformer, or unit auxiliary 
transformer) and the type of relay. For most applications of each type 
of relay, the proposed standard would give applicable entities the 
option of adopting relay settings that meet the stated criteria as 
determined through (1) a relatively simple calculation, (2) a more 
complex calculation, or (3) a described simulation. As stated in the 
standard, the criteria in Attachment 1 ``represent short-duration 
conditions during which generation Facilities are capable of providing 
system reactive resources, and for which generation Facilities have 
been historically recorded to disconnect, causing events to become more 
severe.'' \18\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \17\ Id. 18, and Ex. A at 4.
    \18\ Id., Ex. A at 4 (Rationale for R1).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    10. NERC further explains in its petition that the specific relay 
setting criteria are based on system conditions observed during the 
August 2003 Blackout.\19\ The criteria for relays applied on 
synchronous generators, and

[[Page 17079]]

their associated generator step-up transformers (GSUs) and connecting 
elements, are based on the response of the synchronous generator to 
depressed transmission system voltage (with allowances for reactive 
power losses across the GSU transformer). The criteria for relays 
applied on asynchronous generators and their associated GSU 
transformers and connecting elements are based on the more limited 
response of an asynchronous generator to the depressed voltage (with no 
allowance for loss of reactive power across the GSU transformer because 
such losses are not significant).\20\ The criteria for relays applied 
on unit auxiliary transformers (UATs) that supply station service are 
based on the increased current requirements of station service load 
during a depressed voltage condition.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \19\ Id. 10.
    \20\ Id. 11.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    11. In its justification for approval of the proposed standard, 
NERC explains that ``[a]nalyses of power system disturbances over the 
past twenty-five years have found generators to have tripped 
unnecessarily--an occurrence that has the potential to extend the scope 
and duration of a disturbance.'' \21\ According to NERC, during the 
recovery phase of a disturbance, system voltage may be widely depressed 
and may fluctuate. To support the system during this phase of a 
disturbance, NERC explains that the proposed standard ``establishes 
criteria for setting load-responsive relays such that individual 
generators may provide Reactive Power within their dynamic capability 
during transient time periods,'' thereby avoiding unnecessary tripping 
of generators and ensuring that ``dynamic capability is available to 
support system recovery.'' \22\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \21\ Id. 9.
    \22\ Id. 9-10.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    12. NERC proposes Requirement R1 of PRC-025-1 be assigned a 
``High'' violation risk factor, and a ``Severe'' violation severity 
level for failure to apply settings as required. NERC's Implementation 
Plan proposes that applicable entities must be in compliance with the 
new standard: (1) 60 months after regulatory approval where compliance 
can be achieved without replacement or removal of relays; or (2) 84 
months after regulatory approval if replacement or removal of relays is 
necessary.\23\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \23\ See Sept. 30 Petition, Ex. B (Implementation Plan).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

2. Proposed Reliability Standard PRC-023-3
    13. On December 17, 2013, NERC submitted proposed clarifying 
changes to Reliability Standard PRC-023-2, as reflected in PRC-023-3, 
as ``Supplemental Information'' to its Sept. 30 Petition.\24\ NERC 
explains in its Supplemental Filing that these changes were identified 
during development of PRC-025-1 as ``necessary to establish a bright-
line distinction between the applicability of load-responsive 
protective relays in the transmission and generator relay loadability 
Reliability Standards.'' \25\ NERC explains that stakeholders became 
concerned about potential compliance overlap between the new generator 
relay loadability standard, PRC-025-1, and existing standard PRC-023-2, 
which currently applies to certain elements that connect GSU 
transformers to the transmission system.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \24\ Supplemental Information to the Petition of the North 
American Electric Reliability Corp. for Approval of Proposed 
Reliability Standard PRC-025-1 (Generator Relay Loadability), Docket 
No. RM14-3-000 (Dec. 17, 2013) (Supplemental Filing).
    \25\ Id. 1-2.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    14. In order to clarify that proposed standard PRC-025-1 is 
intended to cover ``all load responsive protective relays applied at 
the terminals of generators and GSU transformers,'' \26\ NERC proposes 
to remove Criteria 6 of Requirement R1 from PRC-023-2 in its entirety. 
That sub-requirement currently requires applicable entities to:
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \26\ See id. at 4.

    Set transmission line relays applied on transmission lines 
connected to generation stations remote to load so they do not 
operate at or below 230% of the aggregated generation nameplate 
capability.\27\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \27\ See Supplemental Filing, Ex. A, Redline of PRC-023-2 at 6.

NERC also proposes to change the applicability section of PRC-023-2 to 
exclude ``Elements that connect the GSU transformer(s) to the 
Transmission system that are used exclusively to export energy directly 
from a BES generating unit or generating plant.'' \28\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \28\ See Supplemental Filing at 4, and Ex. A, Proposed 
Reliability Standard PRC-023-3, Sections 4.2.1.1 and 4.2.2.1.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    15. NERC explains in its Supplemental Filing that the two relay 
loadability standards, as revised, would be based on the location where 
the relays are applied and not on the intended protection functions, 
which it believes is advantageous because it:

    (i) Facilitates the establishment of generator relay loadability 
requirements based on the physics associated with increased 
generator output during stressed system conditions.
    (ii) Avoids ambiguity as to whether the intended protection 
function is for the generating unit or the Transmission System. . . 
.
    (iii) Provides clear division of applicability between the 
Generator and Transmission Relay Loadability Reliability Standards 
based on the physical location, independent of the entity that owns 
the relay.\29\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \29\ Supplemental Filing at 5.

    16. Under NERC's proposed implementation plan, Reliability Standard 
PRC-023-3 will become effective on the first day of the first calendar 
quarter beyond the date that the standard is approved by the applicable 
regulatory authority. Reliability Standard PRC-023-2 would be retired 
immediately prior to the effective date of PRC-023-3, except that 
Criterion 6 of Requirement R1 would remain in effect until the 
effective date of PRC-025-1. Any implementation dates or milestones 
established under PRC-023-2 would remain in place.\30\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \30\ As part of its Supplemental Filing, NERC also submitted a 
report on UAT relay loadability to address concerns raised by 
minority commenters during the development of PRC-025-1 as to 
whether UAT relays on the low-voltage side should be included. See 
id. at 6 and Ex. E. The report concludes that there is no adverse 
reliability impact from Reliability Standard PRC-025-1 as proposed, 
and finds that ``based on a comparison of the simulation models and 
the actual event data, the simulation results are conservative. The 
model results, coupled with the NERC Generating Availability Data 
System (GADS) analysis, are indicative that a reliability gap does 
not result from excluding relays on the low-voltage side of the UAT 
from PRC-025-1.'' Supplemental Filing at 6, Ex. E at 6.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

II. Discussion

    17. Pursuant to section 215(d)(2) of the FPA, the Commission 
proposes to approve Reliability Standard PRC-025-1, including its 
associated violation risk factors and violation severity levels, 
Reliability Standard PRC-023-3, and NERC's proposed implementation 
plans for the new and revised standards. PRC-025-1 appears to 
adequately address the Commission directive in Order No. 733 that NERC 
develop a separate Reliability Standard that addresses generator step-
up and auxiliary transformer loadability, and do so ``in a way that is 
coordinated with the Requirements and expected outcomes of PRC-023-1.'' 
\31\ In addition, we believe that PRC-025-1 will enhance reliability by 
imposing mandatory requirements governing generator relay loadability 
settings, thereby reducing the likelihood of premature or unnecessary 
tripping of generators during system disturbances.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \31\ See Order No. 733, 130 FERC ] 61,221 at PP 104-106.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    18. We also propose to approve the clarifying modifications 
reflected in Reliability Standard PRC-023-3,

[[Page 17080]]

because we agree they serve to clarify the applicability of the two 
standards governing relay loadability and prevent potential compliance 
overlap due to inconsistencies.

III. Information Collection Statement

    19. The collection of information contained in this Notice of 
Proposed Rulemaking is subject to review by the Office of Management 
and Budget (OMB) under section 3507(d) of the Paperwork Reduction Act 
of 1995.\32\ OMB's regulations require approval of certain information 
collection requirements imposed by agency rules.\33\ Upon approval of a 
collection(s) of information, OMB will assign an OMB control number and 
an expiration date. Respondents subject to the filing requirements of a 
rule will not be penalized for failing to respond to these collections 
of information unless the collections of information display a valid 
OMB control number.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \32\ 44 U.S.C. 3507(d) (2012).
    \33\ 5 CFR 1320.11 (2013).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    20. We solicit comments on the need for this information, whether 
the information will have practical utility, the accuracy of the burden 
estimates, ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the 
information to be collected or retained, and any suggested methods for 
minimizing respondents' burden, including the use of automated 
information techniques. Specifically, the Commission asks that any 
revised burden or cost estimates submitted by commenters be supported 
by sufficient detail to understand how the estimates are generated.
    21. The Commission proposes to approve Reliability Standard PRC-
025-1 and to approve revisions to PRC-023-2. Proposed Reliability 
Standard PRC-025-1 will impose new requirements to set certain 
generator protective relays in accordance with prescribed criteria, and 
will apply to transmission owners, distribution providers, and 
generator owners with applicable relays. Affected entities will have to 
ensure that their relays are set in accordance with these criteria and 
maintain records or other evidence demonstrating their compliance with 
the standard's requirements. The revisions to PRC-023-2 will result in 
a change in how relay settings are calculated for certain kinds of 
relays, but will not result in reporting or recordkeeping requirements 
or burden.
    Public Reporting Burden: Proposed Reliability Standard PRC-025-1 
does not require responsible entities to file information with the 
Commission. However, the Reliability Standard requires applicable 
entities to develop and maintain certain information, subject to audit 
by a Regional Entity. In particular, transmission owners, generator 
owners and distribution providers must ``have evidence'' to show that 
each of its load-responsive protective relays are set according to one 
of the options in Attachment 1 to Reliability Standard PRC-025-1. Our 
estimate below regarding the number of respondents is based on the NERC 
compliance registry as of January 31, 2014. According to the NERC 
compliance registry, NERC has registered 539 distribution providers, 
903 generator owners and 344 transmission owners. However, under NERC's 
compliance registration program, entities may be registered for 
multiple functions, so these numbers incorporate some double counting. 
The number of unique entities responding will be approximately 1,019 
\34\ entities registered as a transmission owner, a distribution 
provider, or a generator owner that is also a transmission owner and/or 
a distribution owner. The Commission estimates the annual reporting 
burden and cost as follows:
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \34\ This estimate assumes all of the unique entities apply 
load-responsive protective relays.
    \35\ Normally these reporting and recordkeeping requirements 
would be included under FERC-725G (OMB Control No. 1902-0252). 
However, only one request per OMB Control Number can be pending OMB 
review at a time. Because a pending and unrelated rulemaking also 
affects other aspects of FERC-725G, the reporting and record 
retention requirements for this NOPR in RM13-19 and RM14-3 will be 
submitted to OMB for review under FERC-725Q.
    \36\ GO = Generator Owner, DP = Distribution Provider, TO = 
Transmission Owner, each of whom applies load-responsive protective 
relays at the terminals of the Elements listed (in the Standard) 
3.2, Facilities.
    \37\ The estimated hourly costs (salary plus benefits) are based 
on Bureau of Labor and Statistics (BLS) information (available at 
http://bls.gov/oes/current/naics3_221000.htm#17-0000) for an 
electrical engineer ($59.62/hour for review and documentation), and 
for a file clerk ($28.95/hour for record retention).

                                                FERC-725Q, \35\ as Modified in NOPR in RM13-19 and RM14-3
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                            Annual number                                          Total annual burden
                                      Number and type of    of responses    Total number     Averge  burden and      hours and total        Cost per
                                       respondents \36\    per respondent   of responses     cost per response         annual cost       respondent \37\
                                    (1)..................             (2)                  (3)..................  (1) x (2) x (3).....
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
(One-time) Review & documentation   1,019 GO/DP/TO.......               1           1,019  20 hrs. & $59.62/hour  20,380 hours &                   $1192
 of relay settings to ensure                                                                                       $1,215,056.
 compliance.
(On-going) Record Retention (of     1,019 GO/DP/TO.......               1           1,019  2 hrs. & $28.95/hour.  2,038 hours &                   $57.90
 compliance records for R1 and M1,                                                                                 $59,000.
 for 3 years or until mitigation
 complete).
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Title: Mandatory Reliability Standards for the Bulk-Power System.
    Action: Proposed FERC-725Q.
    OMB Control No: To Be Determined.
    Respondents: Businesses or other for-profit institutions; not-for-
profit institutions.
    Frequency of Responses: One-time and ongoing.
    Necessity of the Information: The Generator Relay Loadability 
Reliability Standard, if adopted, would implement the Congressional 
mandate of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 to develop mandatory and 
enforceable Reliability Standards to better ensure the reliability of 
the nation's Bulk-Power System. Specifically, the purpose of the 
proposed Reliability Standard is to set load-responsive protective 
relays associated with generation facilities at a level to prevent 
unnecessary tripping of generators during a system disturbance for 
conditions that do not pose a risk of damage to the associated 
equipment. The proposed Reliability Standard requires entities to 
maintain records subject to review by the Commission and NERC to ensure 
compliance with the Reliability Standard.

[[Page 17081]]

    Internal Review: The Commission has reviewed the requirements 
pertaining to the proposed Reliability Standard for the Bulk-Power 
System and determined that the proposed requirements are necessary to 
meet the statutory provisions of the Energy Policy Act of 2005. These 
requirements conform to the Commission's plan for efficient information 
collection, communication and management within the energy industry. 
The Commission has assured itself, by means of internal review, that 
there is specific, objective support for the burden estimates 
associated with the information requirements.
    22. Interested persons may obtain information on the reporting 
requirements by contacting the following: Federal Energy Regulatory 
Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426 [Attention: 
Ellen Brown, Office of the Executive Director, email: 
DataClearance@ferc.gov, phone: (202) 502-8663, fax: (202) 273-0873].
    23. Comments concerning the information collections proposed in 
this NOPR and the associated burden estimates should be sent to the 
Commission in these dockets and may also be sent to the Office of 
Management and Budget, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs 
[Attention: Desk Officer for the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission]. 
For security reasons, comments should be sent by email to OMB at the 
following email address: oira_submission@omb.eop.gov. Please reference 
FERC-725Q and the docket numbers of this Notice of Proposed Rulemaking 
(Docket Nos. RM13-19-000 and RM14-3-000) in your submission.

IV. Regulatory Flexibility Act Certification

    24. The Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980 (RFA) \38\ generally 
requires a description and analysis of proposed rules that will have 
significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. 
The RFA mandates consideration of regulatory alternatives that 
accomplish the stated objectives of a proposed rule and that minimize 
any significant economic impact on a substantial number of small 
entities. The Small Business Administration's (SBA's) Office of Size 
Standards develops the numerical definition of a small business.\39\ 
The SBA recently revised its size standard for electric utilities 
(effective January 22, 2014) to a standard based on the number of 
employees, including affiliates (from a standard based on megawatt 
hours).\40\ Under SBA's new size standards, generator owners, 
distribution providers, and transmission owners likely come under one 
of the following categories and associated size thresholds: \41\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \38\ 5 U.S.C. 601-612 (2012).
    \39\ 13 CFR 121.101 (2013).
    \40\ SBA Final Rule on ``Small Business Size Standards: 
Utilities,'' 78 FR 77343 (12/23/2013).
    \41\ 13 CFR 121.201, Sector 22, Utilities.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

     Hydroelectric power generation, at 500 employees.
     Fossil fuel electric power generation, at 750 employees.
     Nuclear power generation, at 750 employees.
     Other electric power generation (e.g. solar, wind, 
geothermal, and others), at 250 employees.
     Electric bulk power transmission and control, at 500 
employees.
     Electric power distribution, at 1,000 employees.
    25. Based on U.S. economic census data,\42\ the approximate 
percentages of small firms in these categories varies from 24 percent 
to 94 percent. However, currently FERC does not have information on how 
the economic census data compares with entities registered with NERC 
and is unable to estimate the number of small GOs, DPs, and TOs using 
the new SBA definitions.\43\ Regardless, FERC recognizes that the rule 
will likely impact small GOs, DPs, and TOs and estimates the economic 
impact on each entity below.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \42\ Data and further information are available from SBA 
available at http://www.sba.gov/advocacy/849/12162.
    \43\ Using the previous SBA definition, 230 of the 1,019 
entities affected by the proposed PRC-025-1 would have qualified as 
small entities.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    26. Proposed Reliability Standard PRC-025-1 will serve to enhance 
reliability by imposing mandatory requirements governing generator 
relay loadability, thereby reducing the likelihood of premature or 
unnecessary tripping of generators during system disturbances. The 
Commission estimates that each of the small entities to whom the 
proposed Reliability Standard PRC-025-1 applies will incur one-time 
compliance costs of $4,480 (i.e., the cost of re-setting any relays 
found to be out of compliance),\44\ plus paperwork and record retention 
costs of $1,192 (one-time implementation) and $57.90 (annual 
ongoing).\45\ Per entity, the total one-time implementation costs are 
estimated to be $5,672 (including paperwork and non-paperwork costs) 
and the annual ongoing costs are estimated to be $57.90.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \44\ These are non-paperwork related costs, which are not 
reflected in the burden described in the Information Collection 
Section above, and instead reflect the burden of re-setting relays 
in order to comply with the new requirements of PRC-025-1. 
Specifically, this figure reflects an estimated time of 8 hours per 
relay, assuming an average of 8 digital relays which will need to be 
re-set per small entity, at a cost of $70 per hour (the average of 
the salary plus benefits for a manager and an engineer, from Bureau 
of Labor and Statistics available at http://bls.gov/oes/current/naics3_221000.htm and http://www.bls.gov/news.release/ecec.nr0.htm).
    \45\ The one-time paperwork-related implementation cost estimate 
is based on a burden of 20 hours at $59.62/hour, and the annual 
record-keeping cost estimate is based on a burden of 2 hours at 
$28.95/hour. See supra at 21 and P 1 note/39.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    27. The Commission does not consider the estimated costs per small 
entity to have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of 
small entities. Accordingly, the Commission certifies that this NOPR 
will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of 
small entities.

V. Environmental Analysis

    28. The Commission is required to prepare an Environmental 
Assessment or an Environmental Impact Statement for any action that may 
have a significant adverse effect on the human environment.\46\ The 
Commission has categorically excluded certain actions from this 
requirement as not having a significant effect on the human 
environment. Included in the exclusion are rules that are clarifying, 
corrective, or procedural or that do not substantially change the 
effect of the regulations being amended.\47\ The actions proposed 
herein fall within this categorical exclusion in the Commission's 
regulations.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \46\ Regulations Implementing the National Environmental Policy 
Act of 1969, Order No. 486, FERC Stats. & Regs. ] 30,783 (1987).
    \47\ 18 CFR 380.4(a)(2)(ii).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

VI. Comment Procedures

    29. The Commission invites interested persons to submit comments on 
the matters and issues proposed in this notice to be adopted, including 
any related matters or alternative proposals that commenters may wish 
to discuss. Comments are due April 28, 2014. Comments must refer to 
Docket Nos. RM13-19-000 and RM14-3-000, and must include the 
commenter's name, the organization they represent, if applicable, and 
address.
    30. The Commission encourages comments to be filed electronically 
via the eFiling link on the Commission's Web site at http://www.ferc.gov. The Commission accepts most standard word processing 
formats. Documents created electronically using word processing 
software should be filed in native applications or print-to-PDF format 
and not in a scanned format. Commenters filing electronically do not 
need to make a paper filing.

[[Page 17082]]

    31. Commenters that are not able to file comments electronically 
must send an original of their comments to: Federal Energy Regulatory 
Commission, Secretary of the Commission, 888 First Street NE., 
Washington, DC 20426.
    32. All comments will be placed in the Commission's public files 
and may be viewed, printed, or downloaded remotely as described in the 
Document Availability section below. Commenters on this proposal are 
not required to serve copies of their comments on other commenters.

VII. Document Availability

    33. In addition to publishing the full text of this document in the 
Federal Register, the Commission provides all interested persons an 
opportunity to view and/or print the contents of this document via the 
Internet through the Commission's Home Page (http://www.ferc.gov) and 
in the Commission's Public Reference Room during normal business hours 
(8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Eastern time) at 888 First Street NE., Room 2A, 
Washington, DC 20426.
    34. From the Commission's Home Page on the Internet, this 
information is available on eLibrary. The full text of this document is 
available on eLibrary in PDF and Microsoft Word format for viewing, 
printing, and/or downloading. To access this document in eLibrary, type 
the docket number excluding the last three digits of this document in 
the docket number field.
    35. User assistance is available for eLibrary and the Commission's 
Web site during normal business hours from the Commission's Online 
Support at 202-502-6652 (toll free at 1-866-208-3676) or email at 
ferconlinesupport@ferc.gov, or the Public Reference Room at (202) 502-
8371, TTY (202) 502-8659. Email the Public Reference Room at 
public.referenceroom@ferc.gov.

    By direction of the Commission.
Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr.,
Deputy Secretary.
[FR Doc. 2014-06591 Filed 3-26-14; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 6717-01-P