California ISO issues Monday alert

With a forecast peak load of 43,694 Mw and temperatures in the triple digits, the California Independent System Operator (ISO) issued a Stage 1 power alert Monday, calling for electricity conservation to avoid outages. The record peak was 45,884 megawatts on July 12, 1999.


With a forecast peak load of 43,694 Mw and temperatures in the triple digits, the California Independent System Operator (ISO) issued a Stage 1 power alert Monday, calling for electricity conservation to avoid outages.

The record peak was 45,884 megawatts on July 12, 1999.

A high pressure system, which moved into the state this weekend, is expected to raise temperatures along with the consumer demand for energy for at least the first couple of days this week, the ISO said. California's central valley is forecast to return to the triple digits, while temperatures in the southern part of the state and the Southwest are expected to remain high.

Increased demand for electricity, to power air conditioning units and other appliances, is forecasted to deplete energy reserves within the state on Monday, the ISO warned.

Separately, Southern California Edison Co. (SCE) called upon residential and business customers to take the warnings seriously "that available power supplies will be stretched critically thin" Monday, because "office buildings have been exposed to extreme heat conditions over the weekend."

The ISO said it is anticipating deficiencies in operating reserves and called for additional supplemental energy bids for the day. The California ISO cautioned utilities that, due to expected hot weather throughout the state Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, it may be difficult to secure sufficient power to meet the state's needs, SCE said.

California is accustomed to importing power from outside the state to meet its peak needs. But in recent weeks, the state has had difficult moving electricity from north to south because of transmission constraints and from east to west because neighboring states such as Arizona also have been gripped by extremely high temperature and have no spare capacity.

A Stage 1 alerts warns customers of potential power shortages and takes effect when electricity operating reserves fall below 7%. Stage 2 is declared when reserves fall below 5% and interruptible load programs are activated. Stage III is activated when reserves drop to 1�% and rolling blackouts are instituted.

More in Home