Last Updated on November 18, 2021 by Mary Pressler
ERCOT NEWS – Up to Date Information on the Texas Power Grid
At Quick Electricity, we’re Texans too. As winter approaches, most of us wonder about the stability of our electric grid and worry about repeat blackouts. We’ve dedicated this page to all things Texas electricity in an attempt to keep everyone informed and impowered. Bookmark this page as Texas Grid Updates and return often, as we will keep you in the loop about ERCOT.
ERCOT UPDATE: Thursday November 18, 2021
The North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) published the 2021-2022 Winter Reliability Assessment. They concluded that the ERCOT grid can operate without problems under normal winter weather. However, if there is another extreme weather event like Winter Storm Uri (February 2021), blackouts are very likely in Texas.
The latest NERC assessment covers the period from December 2021 to February 2022, and the following were some of their key findings and conclusions:
- Under normal conditions, the ERCOT grid will have 84.3 GW of generating capacity for the winter months, and the expected demand is 59.4 GW. This is equivalent to a reserve margin of 42%, which means there is more than enough capacity to provide electricity.
- However, extreme conditions have the potential to disable 28.1 GW of generation capacity, while raising demand up to 76.8 GW. In other words, the power supply can fall below demand under extreme conditions. In this scenario, the ERCOT grid would suffer large-scale blackouts like those from February 2021.
In the worst-case scenario, NERC has forecast a capacity shortfall of -37.1% for the ERCOT grid. However, this would require another extreme event like Winter Storm Uri, and this scenario is not expected with normal winter weather. NERC has estimated a 0.7% probability of having large-scale blackouts in Texas due to extreme weather during the 2021-2022 winter.