With an extremely hot week expected for the state of Texas, the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) told Texans they need to reduce their energy consumption.
ERCOT appealed to Texans and businesses to “voluntarily conserve electricity” on Monday between 2 and 8 p.m. CT by issuing a conservation appeal. The heat wave seen throughout the south is driving electricity use up and putting pressure on the Texas electrical grid.
ERCOT requests the conservation of energy from 2-8 p.m. today amid statewide heat. Read more: https://t.co/CVBehrr5J1 @PUCTX #txlege
ERCOT (@ERCOT_ISO) July 11, 2022
The energy provider also noted that, while solar power is working, there is not enough wind to generate power that way. There is historically less wind being generated right now in the region. The state also experiences widespread drought, contributing to rising heat.
“When we have widespread drought across the state, we end up with fairly high summer temperatures, especially maximum temperatures, because there’s less moisture for evaporation,” state climatologist John Neilson-Gammon told CNN.
ERCOT added that there is “no market solution available” which puts the state at risk of an energy emergency alert.
ERCOT typically issues a conservation appeal “when projected reserves may fall below 2300 MW for 30 minutes or more.” However, ERCOT also said that “no system-wide outages,” or blackouts should happen.
Still, since July 3rd Texas has seen temperatures reach 100 degrees or higher in a record-breaking summer heat wave.
ERCOT is working overtime to manage the stress. On Friday, saw a record 78,204 megawatts used across the system. Monday’s heat wave, and the rest of the week, have the potential to break that record for daily megawatt energy usage.
While ERCOT says there should be no blackouts, Andrew Dessler, director of the Texas Center for Climate Studies, says if anything goes wrong a blackout could occur.
“If temperatures get extreme enough, it’s going to be very tight. And if anything goes wrong, you will have problems with supply,” Dessler added.