California power emergency : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread

Calif. calls power alert after generation loss

(UPDATE: Adds stage 2 alert, para 5)

SAN FRANCISCO, Dec 4 (Reuters) - The California Independent System Operator (ISO) declared a power emergency Monday after 400 megawatts (MW) of generating capacity went out of service following the loss of two high-voltage power lines near Bakersfield, Calif.

The ISO, which manages most of the state's power grid, said in a statement that crews from Pacific Gas and Electric Co. (PG&E) were investigating whether the transmission outage was weather-related.

A spokesman for PG&E, a unit of PG&E Corp. (NYSE:PCG - news), said the crews were working to put the two transmission lines back in service, but the utility did not yet know what caused the outage.

It wasn't known which power plant was affected by the transmission line problem.

The ISO ordered a ``stage one'' emergency at mid-morning Monday and updated it to a ``stage two'' alert late in the day. It appealed to the public to conserve the use of electricity. A stage two alert is triggered when reserves dip below five percent of available supply.

The agency forecast a peak demand for power Monday of 34,267 MW, near the ISO's record winter peak of 34,432 MW set Dec. 13, 1999.

-- mark (, December 06, 2000

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