Market Information System Grid and Market Conditions

News Release

February 15, 2021

Grid operator has restored power to 500,000 households

ERCOT and Texas electric companies working nonstop to restore power to those still waiting 

AUSTIN, TX, Feb. 15, 2021 – The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) is beginning to restore some of the power lost due to the winter weather event in Texas.

As of 4 p.m., approximately 2,500 MW of load is in the process of being restored – enough power to serve 500,000 households.

"ERCOT and Texas electric companies have been able to restore service to hundreds of thousands of households today, but we know there are many people who are still waiting," said ERCOT President and CEO Bill Magness. "It’s also important to remember that severe weather, mainly frigid temperatures, is expected to continue, so we’re not out of the woods."

At this time, the grid operator is instructing transmission owners to shed approximately 14,000 MW of load, down from 16,500 MW earlier today.

At approximately 1:25 a.m. this morning, ERCOT entered its third and highest level of emergency operations because electric demand is exceeding the available supply. Controlled outages are occurring to protect the electric grid from uncontrolled, cascading outages.

While the grid operator was already contending with frozen wind turbines and limited gas supplies to generating units on Feb. 14, a significant number of additional generating units tripped offline when the weather worsened overnight.

Approximately 34,000 MW of generation has been forced off the system during this event.

Controlled outages will likely last throughout the evening and into tomorrow as ERCOT works to restore the electric system to normal operations.

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The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) manages the flow of electric power to more than 26 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 710+ generation units. It also performs financial settlement for the competitive wholesale bulk-power market and administers retail switching for nearly 8 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

512-275-7432