Parts of the US Could Face Energy Shortages and Blackouts This Summer

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All of a sudden, they’re concerned? All these years on occasion we dealt with intermittent BROWNouts.

Nowwwww, there’ll be multi state black outs?. We didn’t have solar or windfarms decades ago too. We had typically brown outs then. Hmmm maybe their green alternatives just aren’t capable of …..and they didn’t anticipate any of this when they switched over? Yet we’re still paying high utility rates while solars supposed to be ‘cheaper’?

Blackouts expected summer of 24

Extreme summer heat increases the risk of power grid instability. Here are the regions in the US that will be affected the most.

Certain areas of the US will face an elevated risk of energy shortages this summer, according to a seasonal grid reliability assessment from the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC).

The report highlights regions of North America that could face grid reliability issues, thanks to too little supply of or too much demand for power. While this year’s summer grid outlook is better than last year’s, there are still some areas of the US that fall under an elevated risk of energy shortage and blackouts during unexpected extreme heat events.

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These areas could face blackouts “under an event that is on the caliber of a once-per-decade heat wave,” said Mark Olson, manager of reliability assessments at NERC.

NERC says much of the Midwest, New England and the region from California to Louisiana are at risk during higher-than-normal peak demand. British Columbia and Saskatchewan in Canada have a higher risk as well.

The chances of blackouts in 2024
There are fewer affected areas than last year’s summer reliability report. The steady addition of renewable energy sources, like solar and wind, to the power grid has helped meet the power demand in some areas across the US, the report says. Utility-scale battery resources have also helped contribute to higher on-peak reserve margins during hours of peak demand.

“A lot of solar came onto the system,” Olson said. “And we’ve had more capacity stick around in some areas that were of concern in the past and that has helped to enable all areas to have resources for normal peak conditions as demand is growing.”

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The grid is at risk for different reasons in different places. Retirement of natural gas-powered generators In New England could lead to less power capacity. Insufficient solar output and wind output during hours of peak demand might also pose some reliability issues in Texas, California, the Southwest and Midcontinental states. Extreme heat waves make transmitting power from other areas difficult.

These are the states NERC warns are under an elevated risk: Arizona, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Nevada, North Dakota, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Texas, Vermont and Wisconsin.

Power outages have been more common in recent years, though they’re down from their peak in 2020. In 2022, the most recent year with available data, the average American household had their electricity supply interrupted for 5.5 hours, according to the Energy Information Administration. Over half of those hours were due to “major events,” typically extreme weather.

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