Most of the United States will face a high risk of power outages if summer weather becomes extreme, extending to parts of the southeastern United States for the first time, according to the regulator that oversees power grid stability.
Energy supply should be enough to meet normal summer peak demand, but “if summer temperatures increase and become more widespread, the western United States, Midwest, Texas and southeastern United States, New England and Ontario may experience resource shortages,” said the North American Electric Reliability Corp. said this week in his Summer 2023 Reliability Assessment.
Extreme heat events particularly put the western United States at risk of shortfall, as it depends on regional energy transfers to meet demand during peak periods or when solar generation is reduced, according to the report.
NERC added the central-southeast region, including Tennessee and parts of five neighboring states, to its risk list because peak demand is expected to increase by about 950 MW with little change in demand. offer.
The Midcontinent independent system operator, which serves a wide range of customers from the U.S. Gulf Coast to Canada, could face problems during periods of high demand if power output from wind turbines is lower than forecast.
Texas has added more than 4 GW of new solar capacity to its grid since last year, but “dispatchable generation may not be enough to meet reserves during an extreme heat wave with light winds,” it said. said the NERC.
The New England grid has less power than last summer and will likely need help from neighboring areas to handle the tough times, the report said.
“This report is a particularly dire warning that America’s ability to keep the lights on has been compromised,” said NERC CEO Jim Matheson.
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Power grid operator PJM Interconnection released a report earlier this year warning it could face a serious power generation capacity shortfall in the coming years because the withdrawals of traditional generators exceed the additions.