National electric power group warns of summer energy shortfalls

Indiana summer blackouts possible hot heat


A large part of the U.S., including Oklahoma, could face energy shortfall this summer because of the heat warned a national electric power group in a recent release.

It came from the North American Electric Reliability Corporation which issued its 2023 Summer Reliability Assessment. The assessment warned that two-thirds of North America is at risk of energy shortfalls this summer during periods of extreme demand. While there are no high-risk areas in this year’s assessment, the number of areas identified as being at elevated risk has increased.

The assessment finds that, while resources are adequate for
normal summer peak demand, if summer temperatures spike, seven areas — the U.S. West, SPP and MISO, ERCOT, SERC Central, New England and Ontario — may face supply shortages
during higher demand levels.

“Increased, rapid deployment of wind, solar and batteries have made a positive impact,” said Mark Olson, NERC’s manager of Reliability Assessments. “However, generator retirements continue to increase the risks associated with extreme summer temperatures, which factors into potential supply shortages in the western two-thirds of North America if summer temperatures spike.”

This year’s assessment, which is summarized in a 2023 Summer Reliability Assessment Video, finds that:

• Areas in the U.S. West are at elevated risk due to wide-area heat events that can drive above-normal demand and strain resources and the transmission network.
• In SPP and MISO, wind energy output will be key to meeting normal summer peak and extreme demand levels due to little excess firm capacity.
• The risk of drought and high temperatures in ERCOT may challenge system resources and may result in emergency procedures, including the need for operator controlled load shedding during periods of low wind and high generator outages.
• The SERC Central region is forecasting higher peak demand and less supply capacity,
creating challenges for operators to maintain reserves in extreme scenarios.
• New England has lower available capacity than last year, resulting in a higher likelihood of system operators using emergency procedures to manage extreme demand conditions.
• In Ontario, extended nuclear refurbishment has reduced available capacity, limiting system reserves needed to manage peak demand.