California ISO issues power alert

The California Independent System Operator (CAISO) issued a Stage 1 power watch Wednesday for southern California. In addition to the increasing demand on the system due to the hot weather, CAISO said equipment malfunctions at power plants located in southern California as well as the Southwest have caused a significant decrease in the generation available for the region.


The California Independent System Operator (CAISO) issued a Stage 1 power watch and declared a "no touch" day Wednesday for southern California.

The CAISO said operating reserves are narrow and urged southern Californians to watch energy consumption, curtailing their use of electricity whenever possible.

In addition to the increasing demand on the system due to the hot weather, CAISO said equipment malfunctions at power plants located in southern California as well as the Southwest have caused a significant decrease in the generation available for the region. A spokesman said about 3,100 Mw is out of service, mostly in the south.

The peak demand on the ISO-controlled grid is expected to reach 40,500 Mw by Wednesday afternoon. The record peak was 45,884 Mw July 12, 1999.

In declaring a "no touch" day, under CAISO rules no work can be performed on the transmission system, system generation, or associated computer control systems without the express permission of the ISO. CAISO said market participants are cautioned to avoid actions that may unnecessarily jeopardize reliability.

The California ISO is chartered by the state to manage the flow of electricity along the long-distance, high-voltage power lines that make up the bulk of California's transmission system. Following restructuring of the state's electricity industry, the California ISO's mission is to keep the open market power grid in California reliable, safe, competitive, and accessible.

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