ERCOT sets new wind power record
The Electric Reliability Council of Texas, (ERCOT), grid operator for most of the state, set a new wind record on Nov.10, 2012.
Wind power output reached 8,521 megawatts (MW) at 10:21 a.m. This represented nearly 26 percent of system load at the time and surpassed the previous instantaneous record, set the evening of June 19, 2012, by more than 150 MW.
One MW is enough electricity to power about 200 homes during hot summer days when electric use is highest and about 500 homes during periods of typical consumption.
"We have surpassed previous wind power records several times this year," said Kent Saathoff, ERCOT’s vice president of Grid Operations and System Planning. "While added capacity is one reason for this growth, experience and improved tools also are enabling ERCOT to integrate this resource into the grid more effectively than ever before."
Nearly 7,000 MW of the new record included wind power from West Texas wind farms, followed by more than 1,100 MW from wind farms along the Texas Coast.
ERCOT has more than 10,000 MW of wind power capacity, with nearly 21,000 MW of additional wind generation under review. The completion of high-voltage transmission projects in Competitive Renewable Energy Zones by the end of 2013 will improve ERCOT’s ability to move wind power from West Texas to the metropolitan areas where demand on the grid is highest.
ERCOT is a membership-based 501(c)(4) nonprofit corporation, governed by a board of directors and subject to oversight by the Public Utility Commission of Texas and the Texas Legislature. Its members include consumers, cooperatives, generators, power marketers, retail electric providers, investor-owned electric utilities, transmission and distribution providers and municipally owned electric utilities.