Texans Asked to Temporarily Curb Electricity Use

The Electric Reliability Council of Texas, which operates the grid, asked consumers to use less electricity wherever possible during the time of the day when demand typically peaks.

by by Jim Malewitz, The Texas Tribune / July 31, 2015

The operator of the electric grid that covers most of the state called for Texans to temporarily curb their electricity use for a few hours on Thursday afternoon as record-breaking demands strain the state’s energy resources.

The Electric Reliability Council of Texas, which operates the grid, asked consumers to use less electricity wherever possible between 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. Thursday – a time of the day when demand typically peaks.

The request came in a scorching-hot week when energy use surged across the grid, breaking three consecutive July records. Meanwhile, a few power plants have unexpectedly shut down and forecasters were expecting less wind power Thursday afternoon, the council said.

“This is a precautionary measure to help ensure we can maintain overall reliability during this high-demand period,” Dan Woodfin, director of operations at the council, known as ERCOT, said in a statement. “Voluntary conservation, especially during the late afternoon and early evening hours, can help us ensure reliability throughout the ERCOT grid.”

 

This article originally appeared in The Texas TribuneThe Texas Tribune is a nonpartisan, nonprofit media organization that informs Texans - and engages with them - about public policy, politcs, government and statewide issues.