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Texans fear blackouts rush to buy generators as grid operator urges conservation of electricity

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Texans, scared of the summer power outages, would be rushing to buy generators.

According to a report from Fox 7, local hardware stores and manufacturers are seeing an exponential increase in demand for the machines.

The Houston Chronicle reported earlier this week electricians say there is a backlog of customers waiting to get them installed.

It comes as the state’s grid operator, the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), has urged residents to save energy amid sweltering heat and the onset of hurricane season.

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Record temperatures threatened the western United States over the past week and the city of Austin hits triple digits for the first time in 2021 earlier this week.

In a report, ERCOT reported that the state set a new record for the most electricity ever used in June, at around 73,000 megawatts.

The total generating capacity of the grid is nearly 87,000 megawatts, but on Monday afternoon, more than 12,000 megawatts were unexpectedly disconnected – an incident that the vice president of grid planning and operations ERCOT, Woody Rickerson, called it “unusual” at the start of the summer season.

This measure was enough energy to power 2.4 million homes.

Especially, more than 4 million Texans were left without electricity during the deadly winter storms of February, exposing power supply problems and also increasing generator sales.

In response, Republican Gov. Greg Abbott enacted bills last week, which require the weatherization of power generation facilities, natural gas facilities and transmission facilities and ensure that ERCOT improves communication between state agencies and industry during storms.

The bill also “significantly” reformed the ERCOT, with state politicians playing a larger role in choosing its board members.

Although some energy experts have criticized the reforms, Fox 7 said Abbott told reporters Wednesday that “the Texas power grid is better today than it has ever been” and assured that repairs had been made and that ERCOT “should be ready to go into the summer fully capable of responding to requests “.

Since reporting “tight grid conditions” after a “significant number of forced generation outages,” ERCOT said residents of Texas have responded to demands and “responded strongly by reducing demand for electricity in the end. afternoon “.

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Nonetheless, the agency noted that the need for conservation during peak hours – between 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. CT – would continue until Friday.

ERCOT urges residents to set thermostats to 78 degrees or higher, turn off pool lights and pumps, and avoid using major appliances in order to mitigate risks.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.



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