News Release

    August 13, 2015

    ERCOT reserves drop below 2,500 MW, conservation needed through today’s peak

    AUSTIN, TX, Aug. 13, 2015 -- The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), grid operator for most of Texas, has announced a Conservation Alert and is asking electric consumers to limit or reduce electric use where possible during the 3-7 p.m. peak demand hours today.

    "Although we set new peak demand records without needing to issue a conservation alert during the past week, the high temperatures statewide continue to drive high levels of electricity use," said Dan Woodfin, ERCOT director of System Operations.

    "Generation units on the system have been working hard to keep up with recent demands," Woodfin said. "Some of them have experienced outages today, contributing to tighter conditions."

    The ERCOT system has hit several new demand records in recent weeks, most recently reaching 69,783 MW on Monday, August 10.

    Consumers can help ensure the system is able to continue serving today’s power needs by taking the following steps to help support system reliability during peak demand:

    • Turn thermostat up 2-3 degrees during the peak hours of 3 to 7 p.m.
    • Set programmable thermostats to higher temperatures when no one is home.
    • If home, use fans to feel 4-6 degrees cooler.
    • Schedule pool pumps to run in the early morning or overnight hours; shut off between 4 to 6 p.m.
    • Limit use of large appliances (dishwasher, washer, dryer, etc.) to morning or after 7 p.m.
    • If you cook indoors from 3 to 7 p.m., use a microwave or slow cooker.
    • Close blinds and drapes during late afternoon.

    "We are working to maintain overall reliability during this high-demand period," said Woodfin. "Voluntary conservation can help us reduce the potential for additional measures, such as rotating outages, to ensure reliability throughout the ERCOT grid."

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    The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) manages the flow of electric power to 24 million Texas customers -- representing about 90 percent of the state’s electric load. As the independent system operator for the region, ERCOT schedules power on an electric grid that connects more than 46,500 miles of transmission lines and 570+ generation units. It also performs financial settlement for the competitive wholesale bulk-power market and administers retail switching for 7 million premises in competitive choice areas. 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.

    Contact
    media@ercot.com