For a couple of years, rolling blackouts have been regular occurrences in the state of California, the Midwest and the Deep South. Now, the Joe Biden administration is saying that people have to get ready for even more blackouts this summer as the energy infrastructure nears breaking point.
In the June 3 episode of “Zoon Politicon,” commentator Holly Seeliger talked about the problems brought about by the Biden administration’s push for green energy.
With the grid system not nearly producing enough electricity, a vast swath of land from the Great Lakes to the West Coast is at risk of blackouts as drought takes its toll amid power plant and supply chain woes.
John Bear, CEO of Midcontinent Independent System Operator, which serves the Midwest corridor from Minnesota to the Texas Panhandle, said that energy shortages move the area in the direction of rotating blackouts. The North American Electric Reliability Corporation also lists the Midwest as the one being at the highest risk for energy cuts.
The Federal Electricity Regulatory Commission, an independent body that oversees the U.S. electric grid, estimates that power prices in the region may soar up to 233 percent at the peak of summer, which is boosted by high demands as temperatures rise and gas prices continue to soar.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration also estimates that the average summer temperatures across the U.S. will be between 50 and 80 percent higher than normal.
The Biden administration’s effort to transition six energy grids to a decarbonized system is also part of the problem. According to Bear, part of the effort is phasing out fossil fuel units before new batteries are available. The White House also previously announced Biden’s long-term strategy to decarbonize the U.S. economy by 2050, but under these efforts, each of North America’s six electricity grids will see power capacity decline.
Significant outages have already been faced by the Texas grid over the winter storm in February 2021, which killed 246 people. The grid is set to lose 2.9 gigawatts of gas, coal, and nuclear capacity this year, as well. Meanwhile, the grid run by Bear will lose 3.2 gigawatts of power due to retiring coal plants, which will not be replaced. (Related: Rolling blackouts to affect over a billion people as energy crisis worsens.)
Republican commissioners on the FERC and some industry groups argued for a slower transition to avoid energy shortfalls. One of its members, Mark Christie, said they were headed for a reliability crisis, as they are not yet ready for such a move.
Democrats on the commission, on the other hand, are pushing that power transmission issues are the reasons for periodic blackouts, not the energy transition.
California grid operators, in contrast, have also warned that the state faces a risk of blackouts during the next three summers due to power supply shortages. This prediction is based on an analysis of existing power supplies, with new sources expected to come online and the potential of extreme events, including potential gaps between electricity supply and peak demand.
The state is also trying to shift to cleaner energy, although it isn’t the best long-term solution to power issues. Droughts make hydropower less available, while wildfires reduce electricity transmission, according to the California Energy Commission and the California Public Utilities Commission. (Related: NERC: Power grid problems, intense heat could lead to widespread blackouts in North America this summer.)
California’s electricity blackouts are likely to return this summer due to supply shortages. The most precarious window for electricity supply shortages is in the early evenings after solar power stops working, and September is expected to be the most problematic month.
Follow PowerGrid.news for more updates about energy sources this summer.
Watch the video below for more information on what to expect about power and energy distribution in the U.S. this summer.
This video is from the Zoon Politikon channel on Brighteon.com.
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