MISO History

MISO's wide range of services began simply enough. Several transmission owners recognized the benefits of FERC’s vision to form an independently operated regional transmission system, voluntarily coming together in 1998 to establish MISO.

FERC accepted MISO’s organizational plan and initial transmission tariff on September 16, 1998, then approved the MISO as the nation’s first Regional Transmission Organization (RTO) in December 2001. On December 15, 2001, MISO began reliability coordination and regional planning services, and initiated procedures for regional planning, generation interconnection, maintenance coordination, market monitoring and dispute resolution.

Provide Independent Transmission Service

On February 1, 2002, FERC accepted MISO’s Open Access Transmission Tariff (OATT), allowing us to also provide regional transmission services and eliminate pancaked rates.

Establish Competitive Regional Energy Markets

On April 1, 2005, MISO launched the Energy Markets and began centrally dispatching generating units throughout much of the central United States based on bids and offers cleared in the market. MISO also began administering a market for tradable Financial Transmission Rights.

Integrate Ancillary Services and Balancing Authority

With the launch of our Ancillary Services Market (ASM) on January 6, 2009, MISO also became the region’s Balancing Authority, instructing  local balancing authorities on operation of resources. Integration of ASM into market operations made possible the central dispatch of regulated reserves, spinning reserves and supplemental reserves based on bids and offers cleared.

Today’s Wide-range of Services

MISO’s independent structure now encompasses a wide range of services that benefit the region. Learn more about our Value Proposition.

Evolution of Wholesale Electric Competition

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) regulates interstate transmission and wholesale sales of electricity. Several FERC orders and the Congressional Energy Policy Act of 1992 introduced pivotal changes to the electric power industry.

Energy Policy Act of 1992

Passed by Congress in 1992, this landmark legislation promoted competition in the wholesale electric market. One of the Act’s provisions amended the Federal Power Act, giving FERC authority to order utilities to provide transmission service to requesting wholesale generators. The Act also promoted the use of solar and renewable energy, overhauled nuclear plant licensing procedures and established programs to increase energy efficiency.

FERC Orders 888 and 889

Issued in 1996, these companion orders established the rules regarding opening the nation’s wholesale bulk electric system to competition.  These orders required the establishment of an electronic bulletin board called open access same-time information system (OASIS), which allows users to receive data on current operating status and transmission capacity of any transmission provider.

FERC Order 2000

In this order, the FERC encouraged all FERC-jurisdictional utilities that own, operate or control transmission lines (the lines that carry power from generating plants to distribution substations) to turn operational control of those lines over to an independent agency (independent system operator or regional transmission organization).