CA - Power Blackouts Will Be Worse Than Predicted : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread

Report: Power Blackouts Will Be Worse Than Predicted (KFWB) -- An organization of power producers says rolling blackouts this summer will be worse than predicted by the agency that operates California's power grid.

The North American Electric Reliability Council, NERC, predicts 260 hours of rolling blackouts this summer. The California Independent System Operator, ISO, has predicted 200 hours of rolling blackouts.

NERC says the average amount of electricity reduced during the blackouts will be 2,150 megawatts. If the organization's predictions are accurate, that would mean more than 2 million residents will be affected on average.

The most amount of electricity reduced during rolling blackouts so far this year was 1,307 megawatts on January 18, according to the ISO.

The NERC report said California will not get much help from the Pacific Northwest. The area has been suffering from one of the worst droughts on record, and power output by hydroelectric plants is down.

While the Northwest will have enough power to serve its own needs, it will not be able to export as much power to California as it has in the past, NERC said. Reduction of exports in recent months have made power shortages worse.

The organization said power problems may materialize in New England states, New York City, and Texas as well.

Texas is undergoing a change in its power infrastructure, NERC said. New England and New York City are sensitive to prolonged heat waves, the report said.

NERC said that transmission lines east of the Mississippi River used to move electricity from north to south are congested, and will face even worse problems during the summer.

The report did not predict blackouts in any other part of the country except California.

-- PHO (, May 15, 2001

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