FERC, NERC Conclude “Weather-related Causes” Explain Most Electric Power and Gas Supply Problems During February’s Extreme Cold in Southwest U.S.

Michael Giberson The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) have issued their report on the events surrounding electric power and natural gas supply interruptions around the Southwest United States in early February, 2001. The culprit? According to the press release: “the task force found a majority of the … More FERC, NERC Conclude “Weather-related Causes” Explain Most Electric Power and Gas Supply Problems During February’s Extreme Cold in Southwest U.S.

Ercot Blackout Hearings Underway in Texas State Senate

Michael Giberson Via Houston Chronicle‘s Fuel Fix, notice of hearings on the ERCOT blackout being held Tuesday morning, February 15. Live now and should be archived later. More information from FuelFix: Blackout investigations start up this week ERCOT blackout: Changes already made to emergency procedures UPDATE: A link to ERCOT CEO’s presentation to its board … More Ercot Blackout Hearings Underway in Texas State Senate

Power Consumption Reaches New Peaks in Texas, Ercot Narrowly Avoids Rolling Blackouts

Michael Giberson Much in the news in Texas these past few weeks have been new peak power records and several grid emergency conditions which saw the ERCOT power system narrowly avoid rolling blackout a time or two. Tom Fowler of the Houston Chronicle‘s Fuel Fix blog has been tracking the story closely, see selected links … More Power Consumption Reaches New Peaks in Texas, Ercot Narrowly Avoids Rolling Blackouts

Independent Monitor Finds No Market Abuse During Ercot Rolling Blackouts on February 2

Michael Giberson The ERCOT independent market monitor (IMM) has released its report on the February 2, 2011 rolling blackouts. Excerpts from the report introduction are below, but let’s get to the meat of the matter. The IMM was asked (1) whether there was any evidence that market participants tried to manipulate the market for financial … More Independent Monitor Finds No Market Abuse During Ercot Rolling Blackouts on February 2

Ercot Reliability Monitor Issues Report on the February 2 Rolling Blackouts

Michael Giberson The Texas Reliability Entity¬†has issued its report on the ERCOT extreme cold weather events and rolling blackouts of February 2, 2011. Texas RE is the NERC regional entity for the ERCOT power system and contracted to the Public Utility Commission of Texas to serve as ERCOT reliability monitor for the state agency. In … More Ercot Reliability Monitor Issues Report on the February 2 Rolling Blackouts

Ercot Rolling Blackout News: Powerful Market Forces Already at Work

Michael Giberson A regulatory filing by Energy Futures Holdings Corp., the parent company of Luminant, a major power generator in the Texas market, provides a small peak behind the curtain of confidentiality that has limited the public’s view of what all went wrong on February 2. A small peak, but a significant story: In an … More Ercot Rolling Blackout News: Powerful Market Forces Already at Work

Competitive Power Market in Texas Faces Supply Concerns. Now What?

Michael Giberson The question troubling some folks in Texas’s competitive power market:¬†Will Texas consumers want to consume more electric power than suppliers are able to supply? A resource adequacy review by ERCOT, the power system and market operator for most of the state, suggests that consumer demand may outstrip resources available as early as 2014. … More Competitive Power Market in Texas Faces Supply Concerns. Now What?

On Belief in the Possibility of Price Spikes

Michael Giberson Laylan Copelin, reporting for the Austin American-Statesman, documents the power system resource issues currently troubling state utility regulators in Texas: “State set to grapple again with question: How to encourage more private-sector power generation?” Texas suffered one rolling blackout last winter and narrowly avoided another this summer. The weather extremes might have exposed … More On Belief in the Possibility of Price Spikes

Roundup of News and Commentary on the Texas Rolling Blackouts

Michael Giberson A collection of news and commentary on the February 2 rolling blackouts on the ERCOT grid in Texas. KVUE: After blackouts, PUC member seeks authority to fire ERCOT CEO WFAA: Public Utility Commission grills ERCOT top exec on rolling blackouts Associated Press: Railroad Commission questions industry performance WFAA: Quest for cheap fuel led … More Roundup of News and Commentary on the Texas Rolling Blackouts

Transmitting Power from Mexico to Texas

Michael Giberson During part of the electric power emergency in the ERCOT region of Texas last week, the ERCOT system imported power from Mexico to reduce the extent of the blackouts needed to keep the ERCOT grid operating. The interconnections between ERCOT/Texas and Mexico are relatively recent. The summary of the March 2009 meeting of … More Transmitting Power from Mexico to Texas