EIA Form 860#

Source URL

https://www.eia.gov/electricity/data/eia860

Source Description

US Energy Information Administration (EIA) Form 860 data for electric power plants with 1 megawatt or greater combined nameplate capacity.

Respondents

Utilities

Records Liberated

~1 million

Source Format

Microsoft Excel (.xls/.xlsx)

Source Years

2001-2020

Download Size

189 MB

Years Liberated

2001-2020

PUDL Code

eia860

Issues

Open EIA Form 860 issues

PUDL Database Tables#

We’ve segmented the processed data into the following normalized data tables. Clicking on the links will show you a description of the table as well as the names and descriptions of each of its fields.

We’ve also created the following entity tables modeled after EIA data collected from multiple tables.

Background#

The Form EIA-860 collects utility, owner, plant, and generator-level data from existing and planned entities with one or more megawatt of capacity. The form also contains information regarding environmental control equipment and construction cost data from 2013-2018.

As of 2019, the EIA-860 Form is organized into the following schedules:

  • Schedule 1: Identification

  • Schedule 2: Power plant data

  • Schedule 3: Generator information

  • Schedule 4: Ownership of generators

  • Schedule 6: Boiler information

(Schedule 5 contained generator construction cost information)

Download the following files for further context:

How much of the data is accessible through PUDL?#

EIA-860 data stretches back to 2001, and PUDL currently covers all years starting from 2004. The prior years are published as DBF files and need a special process to read and extract. We intend to include these older years as soon as we can.

PUDL does not currently include the files pertaining to specific renewable energy resources or interconnection.

Who is required to fill out the form?#

Respondents include all existing and proposed plants that have a total generator nameplate capacity (sum for generators at a single site) of 1 Megawatt (MW) or greater and are connected to the local or regional electric power grid. Annual responses are due between the beginning of January and the end of February.

Jointly owned plants must be reported only once by their operator or planned operator.

What does the original data look like?#

Approximately a year after respondents submit their form, the EIA publishes the data in a series of spreadsheets that reflect the thematic contents of the form. These spreadsheets can change year-to-year as the questions in the form are updated or as EIA adopts new formatting standards for their outputs. They are accessible on the EIA website <https://www.eia.gov/electricity/data/eia860>__ as downloadable ZIP files categorized by year. To gain greater insight into year-to-year nuances of the form, we recommend downloading multiple years of EIA-860 ZIP files and comparing both the Form and the Form Instructions files. See below for our description of notable irregularities in the data.

Notable Irregularities#

In 2012 and 2013, the Form was updated to include specific information about renewable generators. These new data are not included in PUDL.

Prior to 2009, the Generators table was split into two spreadsheets: one for operating and one for proposed generation. In 2007 and before, there was an additional file for proposed changes to existing generation. The latter is excluded from PUDL while the former is combined into a single table during the transformation process.

EIA 860 includes a table in “Schedule 6: Boiler Information” which is an association table between boilers and generators. This association is important because in EIA 923 the net generation is reported by generators and the fuel consumption is reported by boilers - so a good boiler generator association is crucial for understanding heat rates. Unfortunately, the reported associations are incomplete. We have implemented a methodology fills in many of the missing links 2014 and later that covers more than 95% net generation reported in the generation_eia923 table. See this blog post and pudl.transform.eia for more information.

PUDL Data Transformations#

The PUDL transformation process cleans the input data so that it is adjusted for uniformity, corrected for errors, and ready for bulk programmatic use.

To see the transformations applied to the data in each table, you can read the doc-strings for pudl.transform.eia860 created for each tables’ respective transform function.