May 15, 2019
The Electric Reliability Council of Texas — ERCOT — warns that a potential record demand for electricity in the Lone Star State this summer could come close to maxing out generating capacity. But ERCOT, which operates the state’s main power grid, also noted that rolling summer blackouts will be unlikely, due to emergency contingencies it has put into place. The contingencies include bringing reserve capacity online, importing power from other states, or implementing voluntary conservation measures.
What prompted the warning, however, is that the cushion between forecast electricity usage this summer and maximum generation capacity is at 8.6%, the smallest margin reported since ERCOT began tracking the figure close to 20 years ago. The margin going into summer 2018 was 11%, which had also raised some concerns. However, the situation had been alleviated with new power plants coming online.
For comments, questions or concerns, please contact Amy Sorter