Texas Ready for Cold Weather After Inspecting 302 Power Plants
(Bloomberg) -- Texas power plants have made the necessary upgrades to protect against cold weather to avoid a repeat of the devastating blackouts caused by last February’s cold snap, according to the state’s grid operator.
The Electric Reliability Council of Texas inspected 302 generating units, which represented 85% of the supply lost to outages during last winter’s storm, and 22 transmission stations, the grid operator said Thursday in a statement. Ercot will perform follow-up inspections on 16 facilities that hadn’t made all the changes needed for the mandatory winterization requirements.
Ten generating units, which represent about 1.7% of the grid’s fleet, had items identified on the day of inspection requiring correction, Ercot said. Many have since been fixed and all the units are fully operational. Six transmission facilities had deficiencies that were “generally minor items,” and most have been corrected, the operator said.
A cold snap will test whether new regulations and other changes made to the grid, such as bolstering reserves, added enough protections for system that’s still seen by regulators as vulnerable to a prolonged deep freeze.
Last winter, extreme weather forced Texas power plants to go offline and cut natural gas supplies that fueled many of them. Millions of Texans were left in the dark for days, and more than 200 people died.
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