Decisions about California’s energy needs have been deeded over to autocrats and opportunists. After three power plants were closed (as a result of the insistence of environmentalists) and wind power production sagged, the result is rolling blackouts. Golden State voters have an opportunity every four years to vote out the politicians who implement these terrible policies. For those that don’t this is the stew they make.
Rolling Blackouts in California Have Power Experts Stumped
Managers of the electric system argue that a lack of power prompted the decision to enact blackouts, though demand this weekend fell short of the state’s peak years.
By Ivan Penn, August 16, 2020, The New York Times
As temperatures began to rise in California on Friday and again on Saturday, the manager of much of the state’s electric grid called on utilities to cut power to hundreds of thousands of customers.
But the rolling blackouts on those days left some of the state’s energy experts bewildered. They said that the utilities had plenty of power available and that the blackouts weren’t necessary. The grid’s capacity may be tested in coming days as temperatures are forecast to reach into the triple digits again in some places.
“They set it up like this is a historic event,” said Bill Powers, a San Diego engineer who provides expert testimony on utility matters before the state’s regulators. “This should not have triggered blackouts.”
The California Independent System Operator, the nonprofit entity that controls the flow of electricity for 80 percent of California, said it acted after three power plants shut down and wind power production dropped. It also cited a lack of access to electricity from out-of-state sources.
“Although a Stage 3 Emergency is a significant inconvenience to those affected by rotating power interruptions, it is preferable to manage an emergency with controlled measures rather than let it cause widespread and more prolonged disruption,” the grid manager, known as California ISO, said a statement.
The sweltering weather has smothered California, while wildfire season has started earlier than usual.