Federal Government uses UPLAN model to examine price volatility in ERCOT

LCG, October 11, 2022--The U.S. Energy Information Administration, or EIA, released its latest supplement to the Short-Term Energy Outlook (STEO) in the Texas market, assessing various possible scenarios using LCG’s UPLAN NPM model, with a special focus on the effects on wholesale power prices and market conditions.

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Michigan Governor Supports Reopening Palisades Nuclear Facility

LCG, September 16, 2022--The Governor of Michigan last week sent a letter to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) in support of Holtec International’s application for a federal grant under the Civil Nuclear Credit (CNC) program to save the Palisades Nuclear Facility in Southwest Michigan. The federal grant could result in restarting the baseload, carbon-free, nuclear power plant.

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Industry News

California Orders Load Shedding for Second Straight Day

LCG, Dec. 6, 2000--The California Independent System Operator yesterday ordered the state's three investor-owned utilities to curtail deliveries to customers with interruptible service contracts in order to keep demand from outstripping available reserves.

The Cal-ISO even asked people to not turn on their holiday lights until after 7:00 p.m., even though it gets dark around 5:00 p.m. and the time to show off your lighted house is when commuters are getting home from work.

Southern California Edison Co. even asked customers to put off doing laundry until after dinner, but it was the holiday lights that got attention. Suzanne Middleburg, a SoCal Ed spokeswoman, said "We've found that more and more people are hanging Christmas lights, and they use more energy than people think."

Middleburg estimated that Christmas lights alone have boosted demand by 1,400 megawatts for SoCal Ed. "For every string you hang up, you essentially turn on another light in the house," she said.

Cal-ISO spokesman Patrick Dorinson sighed "We seem to have avoided a stage three emergency due to a combination of factors," and thanked Californians "for heeding our appeals to conserve energy." The state has had a lot of "Stage 2" power emergencies this year -- more than 20 during the summer -- but never a "Stage 3," which would call for involuntary rolling blackouts.

Though the California Energy Commission has said there will be more than 52,000 megawatts of power available to the state next summer, the Cal-ISO was hard-pressed yesterday to come up with 33,000 megawatts.

A good part of the problem was 11,000 megawatts of generation being shut down. Most of the plants were down for maintenance, after running non-stop all summer, but about 4,700 megawatts of generation in Southern California was idle because the plants had used up their emissions allowances for the year.

During the summer shortages, part of the blame was placed on the decreased amount of power available in the Pacific Northwest for import into California. Now, there is none. Washington and Oregon are having power supply problems of their own, with wholesale prices soaring over $1,000 per megawatt-hour (see related story).

The federal government said it had ordered its facilities in California to conserve energy and had released 220 megawatts of emergency power from the Glen Canyon Dam in the Grand Canyon to ease the shortage.

Cal-ISO said it would ask the South Coast Air Quality Management District, which has threatened to sue plants that exceed their emissions allowances, to lighten up.

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