Market Information System Grid and Market Conditions

News Release

August 04, 2011

Level 2 emergency cancelled; interruptible loads restored

Austin, Aug. 4, 2011 -- The Electric Reliability Council of Texas, Inc. (ERCOT), system operator for the state’s bulk transmission grid, canceled the level 2 emergency at 6:07 p.m., and interruptible loads are restored.   The level 1 emergency will stay in place until the operating reserves return to higher than 2500 megawatts (MW). 

Peak demand was 66,815 MW between 4 and 5 p.m. today – lower than yesterday’s record-high demand since approximately 1,500 MW of load resources and emergency interruptible service resources were dropped as part of the level 2 emergency procedures.  

"Electricity demand for Friday is expected to be lower than today, but we are still asking consumers and businesses to conserve through tomorrow due to the unusually high demand and the increased risk of generation outages during these type of conditions," said Kent Saathoff, vice president of system planning and operations.  "As stated before, we are very appreciative of the businesses and consumers who have been reducing their electricity consumption 3-7 p.m. this week."

Wind generation contributed approximately 1,400 MW during the peak hour.

Approximately 5,000 MW of generation was unavailable today due to forced outages and de-ratings – units unable to run at their peak capacity – compared to about 4,700 MW on Wednesday.

ERCOT was importing 1,033 MW of generation from other grids today via direct current ties, including 288 MW which was procured under emergency protocols from Southwest Power Pool in the Eastern interconnection (58 MW) and from Comisión Federal de Electricidad in Mexico (230 MW). 


Feb. 2               EEA 1-3*
March 23           EEA 1
June 27             EEA 1
Aug. 2              EEA 1
Aug. 3              EEA 1
Aug. 4              EEA 1-2 

* Feb. 2 was the third time since 1989 that level 3 rotating outages were used.  Previous events were Dec. 22, 1989 and April 17, 2006. 


  • 2,400 MW of capacity registered, based on max capacity
  • 190 individual Load Resources from 50 different companies throughout the state
  • Load Resource participation in responsive reserve service is capped at 50 percent of the RRS capacity which is normally 2,300 MW
  • Typically averages ~1,100 MW for any given hour
  • Paid at the market clearing price for that responsive reserve service, the same as generators

* Interruptible Loads service; does not include Emergency Interruptible Load Service, approximately 400-500 MW. 

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.