SAN ANGELO, TX – State Representative Drew Darby on Friday provided an update on the status of the electric grid in Texas.
Here is the information Darby shared on social media:
I want to provide you with a quick update on the Texas power grid. The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) asked customers to conserve electricity on June 14th after “a significant number of forced generation outages” reduced the amount of electricity available to meet demand. As of today, June 25th, we are still waiting for the Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUC) and ERCOT to release information about why 12,000 megawatts of electricity were unexpectedly offline during this period. In the meantime, below is what we do know:
- ERCOT stated preliminary information indicates that unforeseen equipment failures are responsible for forcing many generators offline last week.
- Vistra Corp., the state's largest generator, reported that a main transformer fire stalled the Comanche Peak nuclear plant outside of Fort Worth, which can generate up to 1,150 MW at full capacity.
- According to ERCOT, the 12,000 MW of lost generation included 9,600 MW (or 80%) of thermal (coal, nuclear, and natural gas) power sources. Less than 500 MW of this thermal generation were planned outages for routine maintenance, which means approximately 9,100 MW were offline due to unexpected equipment failures. We need to understand the reason for the unanticipated outages during summer heat.
- ERCOT advised that wind produced between 3,500 to 6,000 MW last Monday, which was 1,500 MW lower than anticipated for a summer afternoon. We need to understand the reason for the incorrect forecast for an underperformance of wind.
- During an open meeting yesterday, the PUC gave ERCOT three days to provide information related to the generation outages. Usually, generators and ERCOT have 60 days to provide the PUC and the public with information on unplanned outages. The PUC said the three-day requirement will remain in effect for the period of June 1, 2021 through September 30, 2021. This accelerated reporting requirement is important because it will allow grid regulators to identify, target, and resolve outages during peak energy demand.
As I get more information, I will keep you all informed.