The US state of Texas had to go for rotating power outages as the state’s electricity grid operator said the electric system cannot meet the high demand on Monday amid Arctic temperatures.
After calling Texans to reduce electricity use to protect the system, the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) said on Twitter: “Energy conservation is critical. Rotating outages are underway to reduce demand on the electric system. We urge Texans to put safety first during this time. Traffic lights and other infrastructure may be temporarily without power.”
The demand came after reserves dropped below 1,000 megawatts, the ERCOT explained the situation on its website.
“This type of demand reduction is only used as a last resort to preserve the reliability of the electric system as a whole,” it added.
The operator said it set a new winter peak demand record Sunday evening, reaching 69,150 megawatts in an hour. It was more than 3,200 megawatts higher than the previous winter peak set back in January 2018.
Meanwhile, President Joe Biden declared an emergency in Texas on Sunday, coordinating local and federal assistance to the emergency conditions resulting from a severe winter storm that began on Thursday and continues.
Across the nation, nearly 170 million people are under winter weather advisories on Monday with several weather-related vehicle accidents reported in multiple states, killing at least 11 people.