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Power outage in California possible as heat wave deformations power grid

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try your best off rolling blackouts labor day evening, managers of California under siege power On Monday, the network declared an energy emergency and warned that Californians may have to double or triple energy saving efforts to keep the lights on. out.

An independent system operator who runs power grid, a Level 2 state of emergency has been declared effective Monday at 6:30 p.m., sign that supplies became increasingly limited as temperatures rose to 110 degrees and above.

Stage 2 means organization “predicts energy shortages” and instructs utilities to take steps to reduce voltage on grids. This may include calling on standby generators, which are usually idle because of air pollution rules.

Shutdowns – first in two years is likely to come if the crisis develops to such an extent that the ISO will have to declare a phase 3 alert.

The situation is complicated by the fact that ISO also declared “emergency transfer” for Northern California, stating that it needed to “remove the congestion in Palermo area” of Butte County. It wasn’t right away clear how much that would complicate ISO’s conservation efforts on.

“Now we have entered the most intense phase of this is heat waves.” — Elliot Mainzer, President and CEO of ISO said earlier in day. “Potential for the number of interruptions in work has increased significantly.”

Mainzer said the power grid is considering “a power shortage.” of from 2000 to 4000 megawatts, which is as much as 10% of normal electricity demand”. This could turn off up to 3 million households.

Flex Warning – a call for voluntary conservation for sixth night in a row in effect from 16:00 to 22:00, an hour longer than usual, highlighting the increasingly dangerous conditions on grid as temperature by parts of the interior of California was expected to rise to 110 degrees or higher.

Mainzer said Californians rallied in time heat wave, reducing their consumption by almost 1,000 megawatts on both Saturday and Sunday evenings – enough electricity for more over 750,000 households.

But to make it through Labor Day unscathed, he says, these conservation efforts need to be double or triple.

Around noon power consumption is expected to peak on Monday evening at 48,961 megawatts. But at 6 pm it was already exceeded this prediction by several megawatts.

Tuesday formed up how significantly worse: peak demand of 51,144 megawatts, breaking 16year-old record for energy use in California.

“We on very thin margin,” said Shiva Gunda, Vice Chairman of California Energy Commission.

The state fought to keep the light on. BUT small fleet of new gas power generators in Roseville and Yuba City, authorized by the state last year and is administered by the Department of Water resources, has been drawn on for in first time. They have produced enough power for around 120,000 homes.

In addition, Gov. Gavin Newsom’s emergency order last week allows industrial enterprises and others fire up standby generators that would otherwise be banned air”Rules of pollution,” Gunda said. “A lot of of our participants can turn on them (generators) and take the load off mesh,” he said.

Some clients with so-called interruptible tariffs, which provide discounts but make them vulnerable to restrictions in availability of energy as reserves are depleted – can be disabled.

Meanwhile, Newsom’s employees called big commercial and industrial firms asking them to reduce their use so that power outages can be avoided, Newsom spokeswoman Erin Mellon said.

“It is inelegantly called “dialing”. for megawatts,” she said.

Help can also comes from utilities such as SMUD, the Sacramento Public Utility District, which is not part of of ISO grid network and there will not necessarily be power outages if they occur. Mainzer said various utilities outside ISO system usually share power with each other during the crunch times.

“Utilities have expectations,” Mainzer said. “They worked together for years.”

SMUD had their hands full with near-record power requires Monday. Will it succeed share power with ISO statewide system “must be game time decisionSMUD spokeswoman Lindsey VanLuningham said. “If we have extra ones, we will.”

Like the state, SMUD asked Sacramento residents to apply up their thermostats down to 78 degrees on Monday night to save power. VanLuningham said it was revealed on Monday night that SMUD avoid rolling blackouts of your own.

Mark Rothleder, head of ISO operating officer, said the Californians have done a wonderful job so far of responding to Flex alerts; number of the number of megawatts saved actually increased as heat the wave continued. Another saving grace was comparatively mild weather in Pacific Northwest, which allows region export more electricity to California.

But the network has experienced significant setbacks. Rotleder said three gas power shell-shocked plants out and there were struggling return full power, erasing about 1000 megawatts in total. Throughout the summer, drought cut off the supply of hydroelectric power. Total 7735 megawatts. of power we out of commission as of Monday morning, according to ISO.

The biggest crunch on in power the grid is expected on Tuesday when temperatures in Sacramento Valley could reach 115 degrees and power demand could set in the system for all time record. “Our goal do it sure we will not reach that number,” Mainzer said.

current record: 50,270 megawatts consumed July 24, 2006 The state managed to avoid a power outage that day, but in California power portfolio changed much in in past 15 years, creating new areas of vulnerability.

In particular, the growing dependence of California on solar power and other renewable sources made the network is prone to power outages in in the early evening when the solar panels go out, but weather stays hot. There were two nights in a row in the state of rolling blackouts in August 2020 and almost happened again in July 2021 heat wave.

Since then, the state has on more than 8000 fresh megawatts of capacity, including more over 2000 megawatts of Battery – a system for marshaling excess power generated by rooftop solar panels and other sources,” Gunda said.

“Imagine where we would be if we didn’t do what we did last two years,” Mellon, Newsom’s spokeswoman, said.

Californians are urged to cool down during Flex Alert off them homes forthcoming of time and then turn up thermostats up to 78 degrees. They are also ask to postpone using heavy appliances.

“We know it’s been a long way,” said Mainzer, “and it’s about to catch up with more difficult.”

Temperatures are expected to be well over 100 degrees in capital region for weight of one week after the National Weather Service extended it’s over the top heat warning until Thursday evening.

Besides, air quality managers issued the fourth “reserve air” warning for Monday like heat ozone levels are expected to remain unhealthy for sensitive groups. Before heat wave, region It was just one alarm day in 2022.

This story was originally published September 5, 2022, 10:14 am.

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Dale Kasler talks about climate change, the environment economy and the confusing world of California water. He also covers major corporate stories for Western newspapers McClatchy. He joined Bee in 1996 from Des Moines Register and graduated from Northwestern University.

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Tyler Hromadka
Tyler Hromadka
Tyler is working as the Author at World Weekly News. He has a love for writing and have been writing for a few years now as a free-lancer.

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