Grid workers project increased frequency of electricity blackouts

Possible planned blackouts
Possible planned blackouts
Published: Jun. 21, 2022 at 3:09 PM CDT
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FARGO, N.D. (Valley News Live) - As summer approaches, regional operators of the electric grid are announcing an elevated risk of electricity shortages in the area. These outages will likely be due to:

  • Warmer than average temperatures.
  • Greater amounts of intermittent renewable generation, such as wind and solar, in the current power supply mix that may not be available when needed.
  • Retirements of fossil-fueled power plants that can fill the gap when the wind doesn’t blow or the sun doesn’t shine.

If the demand for electricity outpaces supply, then grid operators will issue energy alerts or even energy emergency alerts to balance the electric system to avoid catastrophic failure of the grid.

If Energy Alert or Energy Emergency conditions occur this summer, regional utilities will run all types of available generation to prevent electrical outages. During an ENERGY ALERT, they will ask customers to reduce their energy use as much as possible.

Some things you can do to reduce your energy usage:

  • Turn up your thermostat a few degrees
  • Close your drapes or blinds to keep the sun out
  • Shut off all unnecessary lights and equipment
  • Delay using large appliances like ovens, washing machines, and dishwashers until later in the evening.

If these and other measures are not successful, the regional grid operator will issue an ENERGY EMERGENCY and initiate a controlled temporary outage to maintain the stability of the electric grid.

To find more information and to check for updates, visit Current Electric Grid Conditions. if you or your family have special concerns, call Moorhead Public Service at 218-477-8000.

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