Why does California’s power grid keep flirting with disaster? We’ve got answers

Sammy Roth LA Times

California was forced to take desperate measures over Labor Day weekend to keep the lights on.

Less than a month after the state experienced its first rolling blackouts in nearly two decades, officials again urged residents to use less electricity during the late afternoon and into the evening as extreme heat, fueled by the climate crisis, baked the West.

California needed all the conservation it could get as out-of-control fires, also worsened by global warming, rendered some power plants useless. Flames knocked out transmission lines and generators from the Sierra Nevada to the San Diego backcountry.

Just like last month, Californians responded in force, using far less energy than predicted. Electric utilities turned to their Western neighbors for extra power supply. The Trump administration granted an emergency request from state officials to allow three Los Angeles-area gas plants to produce more electricity than federal pollution permits would normally allow.

And so most of California narrowly avoided shortage-induced rolling blackouts, even as heat-related equipment failures knocked out electricity to 115,000 homes and businesses in Los Angeles, and as Pacific Gas & Electric shut off power to 172,000 customers to reduce the risk of its electrical infrastructure igniting more fires.

Read the rest of the story on The Los Angeles Times via Yahoo.news


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William Hicks
William Hicks
1 month ago

It couldn’t have anything to do with the direction the State has taken regarding the false notions behind global warming, could it? Maybe dependence upon a source of energy that stops at sunset is a foolish choice.