power grid

Blackouts Likely This Summer Due to Extreme Weather, Grid Issues

  May 24, 2022

By Dave Lubach

Significant parts of the country are facing an increased risk of power outages this summer due to extreme weather, according to an assessment from the North American Electric Reliability Corp. (NERC). 

Texas, Southern California and the central and upper Midwest regions are subject to failing power grids due to extreme heat, wildfires and droughts, as reported in E&E News

Analysis from NERC says that a combination of climate change and transition to carbon-free renewable power from traditional fossil fuel could make for a tough summer in these areas. 

One of the biggest threats to the power grid according to the NERC report is power inverter disruptions. Power inverters must, according to the article, “must be programmed to 'ride through’ short-term disturbances, as when a power plant or high-voltage line goes down.”  

“That is one of the most dangerous things to happen on the bulk power system,” says John Moura, director of reliability assessment and performance analysis at NERC, of the power inverted issues. 

Officials in California are already warning residents of potential blackouts because of power supply shortages, projecting issues in September when sunlight reduces and solar power opportunities are reduced. 

Texas grid officials say they anticipate no power outages this summer. An energy company in Texas forecasts peak demand in summer at about 14,000 megawatts less than the anticipated resource capacity. 

Dave Lubach is managing editor, Facility Market.



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