UPDATE - CA ISO Moves to Stage 2 Emergency at 3:45 P.M.

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BW0753 JUN 26,2000 17:51 PACIFIC 20:51 EASTERN

( BW)(CA-CALIFORNIA-ISO-3) California ISO Moves to Stage Two Emergency at 3:45 p.m.; Southern California Edison Initiating Two Curtailment Programs

News Editors/Energy Writers

FOLSOM, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--June 26, 2000--High humidity in Southern California and hot temperatures throughout the western states prompted the California Independent System Operator (California ISO) to move to a Stage Two Emergency at 3:45 p.m. today. The California ISO has requested that Southern California Edison initiate curtailment programs with select customers, including the cycling of agriculture water pumps and air conditioning units. Unavailable generation has limited the ability of the northwest and southwest to export electricity to California. This in combination with increased statewide demand -- prompted by hot weather in the valley and high humidity in the south -- has resulted in narrow energy reserves. The California ISO anticipates reaching a peak load of 43,039 megawatts today. The Stage Two will last until 7 p.m. tonight. Continuously updated information about California ISO operations is available on the web at www.caiso.com. A Stage Two Emergency is declared when operating reserves dip below five percent or are expected to within the next two hours. At this time, only the specific curtailment programs mentioned above have been implemented. Interruptible load management programs managed by the state's utilities have not been activated. These programs rely on commercial and industrial customers who receive discounted electricity rates to voluntarily curtail their electricity use in order to lower the state's demand for power. While not anticipated today, if an operating reserve shortfall of less than one-and-a-half percent is unavoidable, Stage Three is initiated. Involuntary curtailments of service to customers, including "rolling blackouts," are probable during this emergency declaration. The California ISO's Electrical Emergency Plan (EEP) is part of the state's enhanced reliability standards created by landmark legislation Assembly Bill 1890, which restructured California's electricity industry. 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. The not-for-profit public-benefit corporation assumed the responsibility in March, 1998, when California opened its energy markets to competition and mandated the investor-owned utilities turn their private transmission power lines over to the California ISO's public power grid. The mission of the California ISO is to safeguard the reliable delivery of electricity and ensure equal access to the state's "electron highway," which spans 124,000 miles or three-quarters of the state.

Other helpful contacts (for media only):

PG&E 415/973-5930 SCE 626/302-2255 SEMPRA ENERGY 619/696-4292



-- (Dee360Degree@aol.com), June 27, 2000


Some Calif. companies to lose power as alerts issued

Reuters Company News - June 27, 2000 16:01

By Nigel Hunt

LOS ANGELES, June 27 (Reuters) - As a heat wave gripped the U.S. West, Californians braced Tuesday for possible blackouts and power customers across the state were urged to cut back on usage.

The California Independent System Operator (ISO), which operates around 75 percent of the state's power grid, issued alerts calling for cutbacks as reserves fell below five percent. A stage one alert was ordered Tuesday morning when reserves fell below seven percent. It called for voluntary power conservation.

By early afternoon, a stage two alert had gone into effect, calling on some industrial and commercial customers with "interruptible" contracts to lose power. These customers receive electricity at a lower rate in return for losing power when reserves fall below five percent mark.

Ron Nunnally of utility Southern California Edison (SCE) said at this stage no activation of stage three, which would mean rolling blackouts across the state, was anticipated.

Much could depend on whether any problems develop at the region's major power plants.

"If we lose a big unit that will change the picture significantly," said Nunnally, who is SCE's director of federal regulation and contracts.

Rosemead, Calif.-based SCE is a unit of Edison International .

Earlier this month, there were rolling blackouts in both the San Francisco and Sacramento areas as record heat led to heavy use of air conditioners and supply was unable to keep pace with soaring demand.

The latest crisis has been partly triggered by a heat wave in the Pacific Northwest, which normally exports a significant amount of power to California.

"One of the things that is compounding (problems) today is that it is very hot up in the Pacific Northwest. Seattle and Portland are having very high temperatures, so energy that is normally imported from the Northwest into California is being used in the Northwest," Nunnally of SCE said.

An unexpected outage at the 1,150 megawatt WNP-2 nuclear plant in Richland, Wash. also helped cut back power exports from the Pacific Northwest to California.

The plant, which is operated by Washington Public Power Supply System, tripped off line early Monday following a relay problem. It is not expected to return to service before Wednesday night at the earliest.

Hot weather in the Southwest, with Phoenix expected to see temperatures rise to a scorching 108 degrees Fahrenheit (42.22C), was also reducing the movement of power from that region to California.

The state's power problems are rooted partly in the nation's booming economy with western states among those showing the fastest growth.

Power loads in Nevada, for example, have grown 51 percent during the last 10 years, helping to absorb the Southwest's power surplus, which used to be exported to California.

There have also been few power plants built during the past 10 years and although many are now planned, the prolonged approval and construction process means most will not come on line before 2002. Copyright 2000 Reuters Limited. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of Reuters content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Reuters. Reuters shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

http://www.marketwatch.newsalert.com/bin/story? StoryId=CovGMWb9DtJi3mJK3mZe2&FQ=outage&Title=Headlines%20for%3A% 20outage%0A

-- (Dee360Degree@aol.com), June 27, 2000.

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