ERCOT issues voluntary power conservation call in Texas heat wave


Published Aug 17, 2023 12:47PM ET
© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A general view of electric lines as demand for power surges during a period of hot weather in Houston, Texas, U.S. June 27, 2023. REUTERS/Callaghan O’Hare/File Photo
(Reuters) – The Electric Reliability Council Of Texas (ERCOT) urged consumers to voluntarily conserve power between 3:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. CT on Thursday with demand expected to surge amid a heat wave.
Power use hit a record for the 10th time this summer at 85,435 megawatts (MW) on Aug. 10, and on Thursday was projected to hit 85,318 MW.
The demand record will likely be broken again on Friday with ERCOT forecasting that as of 3:30 PM CT usage will reach 86,694 MW.
Day-ahead power prices for Aug. 17 in nearly all ERCOT hubs spiked to over $3000 per MW hour (MWh) for the hour ending 20:00 CT, reaching as high as $3,596.60 per MWh.
ERCOT, which operates the grid for more than 26 million customers representing about 90% of the state’s power load, said it has enough power to meet current demand.
Temperatures in Houston, the biggest city in Texas, were forecast to reach as high as 105.8 degrees Fahrenheit (41°C) on Thursday, according to AccuWeather.
Extreme weather in Texas has been in focus since a deadly storm in February 2021 left millions without power, water and heat for days as ERCOT struggled to avoid a grid collapse.


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