ERCOT Predicts Future Peak Demand Struggles

Future power projections for Texas have improved, according to the agency that oversees most of the state's power grid.  ERCOT says new numbers on actual economic growth indicate the load on the system will not be as heavy as previously predicted.

But the state could still struggle with peak demand — possibly even next summer.  And ERCOT 's warren lasher says future years could see decreased reserve capacity.

"Even the outlook has improved somewhat, we continue to see reserve margins decline the further out we look. This indicates the continuing need to encourage new generation and develop more demand response options to reduce electric use during peak demand periods."

ERCOT says it will have a reserve margin of 13.2 percent in the upcoming summer.  But by 2014, those reserves will drop to 10.9 percent.  It will continue to drop, hitting 2.8 percent by 2022.

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Ed Mayberry

Local Anchor, All Things Considered

Ed Mayberry has worked in radio since 1971, with many of those years spent on the rock 'n' roll disc jockey side of the business...