Pacific Northwest prepares for power crunch

Friday the electricity crisis in California spread to the Pacific Northwest where officials are predicting extremely tight supplies for power this weekend and early next week. The Pacific Northwest security coordinator issued a �Regional Emergency Warning of Potential Alert 2� earlier Friday.

Dec 9th, 2000


Ann de Rouffignac
OGJ Online

Friday the electricity crisis in California spread to the Pacific Northwest where officials are predicting extremely tight supplies for power this weekend and early next week.

The Pacific Northwest security coordinator issued a �Regional Emergency Warning of Potential Alert 2� earlier Friday.

�The weather forecast of 21 degrees cooler than our regular load norms for this time of year means we will be very close on power,� says Rich Nassief, director of the Northwest Power Pool. �We usually get 3,000 to 4,000 Mw of power from California in the winter which we can�t get now.�

Nassief says that the power pool is warning the region that blackouts are possible, if the appropriate response to the emergency alert 2 are not received.

�We think we will get by if we don�t lose any large resources or if parts of the transmission system don't go down,� he says. �There is a potential of about 3,000 Mw of interruptible industrial load. But that is just an estimate.�

The region had just developed its winter emergency plan and formed the new organization Pacific Northwest Security Coordinator a few days ago.

According to the Pacific Northwest Winter 2000-01 Energy Emergency Plan, an Emergency Alert 2 will be declared by the security coordinator if the regional forecasts indicate firm loads can only be met, after including in the projections extraordinary actions, including but not limited to:

� Public appeals to reduce demand.

� Voltage reduction.

� Demand-side management.

� Utility load conservation measures.

� Interruption of non-firm end use power contracts.

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