The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) announced on Monday, Aug. 1, that power use in the Lone Star State is expected to shatter records for that week. The announcement came as homes and businesses stepped up their air conditioners to get relief from another heat wave.
But the Texas grid operator, which manages about 90 percent of the state’s power load for more than 26 million customers, said it has enough resources to satisfy the demand. (Related: Texas electricity use surpasses all-time record amid scorching heat… but the grid is holding together for now.)
The U.S. is expected to use record amounts of power this year due largely to economic and population growth in Sun Belt states like Texas.
Severe weather is a reminder of the February freeze in 2021 that left millions of Texans without power, water and heat for days as ERCOT scrambled to stop a grid collapse.
So far this year, the grids have had enough reserves to meet demand and have only requested consumers to conserve power occasionally.
According to AccuWeather, temperatures in Houston will rise from 92 degrees Fahrenheit (F) on Monday to 96 F on Wednesday, August 3. That matches with a normal high of 95 F for this time of year.
ERCOT predicted power use will soar to 78,939 megawatts (MW) on Tuesday, August 2, and 80,076 MW on Wednesday, both more than the record of 78,828 MW set on July 20.
One megawatt can power about 1,000 U.S. homes on a normal day, but only around 200 homes on a hot summer day in Texas.
Power prices at the ERCOT North Hub, which includes Dallas, dropped to a one-week low of $96 per megawatt-hour (MWh) on Monday from $118 on Friday, July 29. That equates to an average of $77 so far this year, $141 in 2021 and a five-year (2017-2021) average of $56.
The average in 2021 was swollen by price hikes of up to $9,000 per MWh during the February freeze.
Power use in Texas and other Central U.S. states had shattered all-time records in the past month as homes and businesses jacked up their air conditioners for relief from the heat.
Grid operators have begun taking steps to assure they have enough resources to keep pace with increasing demand as temperatures rise into the triple digits across the U.S. and the cost of delivering electricity increases for utility companies.
ERCOT received permission from state environmental regulators to permit power plants to surpass their air permit pollution limits.
Last month, ERCOT met demand in part by urging customers to conserve energy to avoid rotating outages.
Southwest Power Pool (SPP), which manages the grid for nearly 18 million people in 17 states from North Dakota to Texas, has requested its members to put off maintenance on some crucial equipment like power lines and generating plants. That is a common step grid operators take to guarantee resources will be accessible during seasons of high demand.
According to SPP, power use is expected to hit 53,760 MW on Tuesday, which would break the current all-time high of 52,028 MW set on July 15.
Meanwhile, wind and solar power generation in Texas was down last month due to weather patterns. These issues with wind and solar electricity generation again highlighted the unreliability of clean energy sources.
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Watch the video below to know what really happened during the Texas power grid outage.
This video is from the Prosciencetruth channel on Brighteon.com.
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