Texas’ power grid set a new winter peak demand record Sunday evening

Texas

A view of I-35 from the bridge at Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard in Austin at 9:33 p.m. February 14, 2021. KXAN Photo/ Frank Martinez.

AUSTIN (KXAN) –As communities across Texas bundle up inside during a winter storm impacting the entire state, the state’s power grid set a new winter peak demand record on Sunday evening.

The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) announced at 8:37 p.m. on February 14, 2021 that the new record had been set, reaching 69,150 Megawatts between 6 and 7 p.m. ERCOT noted this number is more than 3,200 Megawatts higher than the previous winter peak which was set January 2018.

ERCOT thanked everyone who had been conserving energy and encouraged people across the state to step up to decrease the demand on the grid.

According to the latest real-time conditions from ERCOT, as of 10:15 p.m., the actual system demand was at 66,930 Megawatts and the total system capacity was at 68,546 Megawatts.

Austin Energy told KXAN Sunday it is working with ERCOT to comply with state grid oversight directives. As a result, Austin Energy is encouraging voluntary energy conservation from Austin Energy customers such as:

  • Reducing thermostats
  • Avoid using large appliances
  • Consider turning off nonessential lighting
  • For customers who use larger amounts of energy: consider shutting down or reducing your non-essential production processes.

Austin Energy said it is ready to execute rolling outages if needed. But Austin Energy said that would only happen if Austin Energy gets a directive from ERCOT to do so.

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