CA: ISO Orders Utilities to Begin Voluntary Load Shedding : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread

ISO Orders Utilities to Begin Voluntary Load Shedding LCG, Sept. 19, 2000-The California Independent System Operator, in a taste of what is likely to happen today, declared a Stage 2 Electrical Emergency yesterday and ordered the state's three investor-owned utilities to begin cutting power to customers with interruptible contracts.

Cal-ISO asked the companies to shave 1,710 megawatts off their demand to relieve strain on the state's power grid. Yesterday evening, the agency said today would be another "power watch" day, with demand pushing 45,000 megawatts.

If Cal-ISO has any dreams about importing power across the Oregon border today, it will likely find them empty. Availability of power from the Pacific Northwest was abruptly curtailed yesterday at about 3:00 p.m. when the 1,150 megawatt Washington Public Power Supply System nuclear power plant near Pasco, Wash., was taken down because operators experienced a sudden increase in offgas flow and decreasing condenser vacuum. The plant was in hot shutdown mode this morning.

A problem that will plague the Cal-ISO all week is that some of the in-state plants that have been pumping out power all summer are now shut down for repairs and maintenance. An ISO spokeswoman said "We've got 3,000 megawatts off because of scheduled maintenance," adding the shutdowns were overdue because many had deferred maintenance during June and July, when power was also critically short


-- Martin Thompson (, September 20, 2000

Moderation questions? read the FAQ