The Texas grid is more reliable and resilient than ever before, an Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) spokesperson told Rigzone.
The grid’s current status is due to landmark reliability reforms ERCOT and the Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUCT) have implemented in the past year and a half, the spokesperson outlined, adding that these included the required winterization of the generation fleet, and an added firm fuel supply service by a number of generators.
In a Seasonal Assessment of Resource Adequacy report for winter 2022/23, which was released on November 29, ERCOT anticipated that there will be sufficient installed generating capacity available to serve the system-wide forecasted peak demand for the upcoming winter season, assuming that the ERCOT region experiences typical winter grid conditions.
“The forecasted peak demand is 67,398 MW and is based on average weather conditions at the time of the winter peaks for years 2007 through 2021,” the report noted.
“The inclusion of 2021’s extreme winter weather conditions increases the base forecast relative to last year’s winter peak demand forecast. The forecast also incorporates expected load increases during the peak demand hour due to interconnection of Large Loads (such as crypto-mining facilities) to Transmission Service Provider networks,” the report added.
About 87,300 MW of winter-rated resource capacity is expected to be available for the winter peak, according to the report, which includes a typical thermal generating unit outage assumption of 9,966 MW during the winter months, which it states is based on historical winter outage data for the last three winter seasons.
The report also includes two risk scenarios, with the most extreme of these assuming a high peak load with extreme unplanned thermal plant outages based on historic observations, combined with additional outages due to a weather event comparable to Winter Storm Uri and extreme low wind power production. This scenario assumes a reduction to weather-related and fuel limitation outages due to weatherization performed by generation owners and natural gas supply and pipeline operators, as well as other winter preparedness activities including capacity procured by ERCOT through the new firm fuel supply service, the report stated.
ERCOT manages the flow of electric power to more than 26 million Texas customers, representing about 90 percent of the state’s electric load, the company’s website highlights. ERCOT is a membership-based 501(c)(4) nonprofit corporation, governed by a board of directors and subject to oversight by the PUCT and the Texas Legislature.
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