The California Independent System Operator July 9 significantly increased grid interconnection costs for power facilities in an attempt to get more wind and solar projects on line. However, the move was not as far-reaching as some urged. Despite some developers\u2019 attempts to eliminate feasibility studies for new interconnections, the grid operator board declined to do so. Currently, the cost for developers to line up a power interconnection into CAISO\u2019s system is $10,000. This week\u2019s decision upped the stakes considerably--to $250,000. While renewables representatives weren\u2019t happy with the increase, they supported it in order to get transmission to the projects moving through the clogged grid operator\u2019s process. \u201cIt should begin to get us out of the morass we\u2019ve been in,\u201d Nancy Rader, director California Wind Energy Association, and Shannon Eddy, Large-Scale Solar Association director, stated. They referred to the inability of projects to tap into the transmission system. Still, the groups say the resulting new timeline is \u201cuntenably long.\u201d The increase of renewable energy projects in the state is causing a glut of interconnection requests. Connections to transmission lines to get new power facilities\u2019 energy from where it\u2019s created to where it\u2019s used are requisite. We\u2019re \u201coverwhelmed by the queue,\u201d said Stephen Rutty, CAISO manager of grid assets. Federal regulators have acknowledged the \u201cglut\u201d of requests on a national basis too. The grid operator notes 361 interconnection requests for more than 105,000 MW of capacity. Most of that is wind power, according to Rutty. The concept underlying the price increase is to winnow projects that are taking up staff time but are not immediately feasible. Rutty said he expects most projects to take four to five years to get to the actual interconnection stage. However, he added that time frame was optimistic--other grid operators conclude it might take up to 20 years. In other grid operator news, the market redesign for wholesale trading remains due to start at the beginning of November. \u201cLet\u2019s push for that date\u201d said Yakout Mansour, California Independent System Operator chief executive officer. Stakeholders appear to be willing to postpone the start up. CAISO staff and management seem intent on a November initialization. The market redesign affects about 5 percent of wholesale electricity transactions--from increasing and decreasing power plant output, to more esoteric trades in ancillary services. The new technology to run the wholesale system is being tested.