No rolling blackouts expected during California heat wave
California utility company Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) said June 18 no rotating power outages were necessary, a day after the state governor declared a state of emergency due to excessive heat.
While coastal communities will see only moderate temperatures, inland temperatures in California are expected to approach 100° Fahrenheit (37° Celsius). The National Weather Service issued an excessive heat warning for June 18, warning that temperatures could reach as high as 108°F in parts of the broader San Francisco Bay area.
California governor Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency on June 17, warning that the heat wave will stress energy grids across the western seaboard.
“The proclamation suspends certain permitting requirements, allowing the use of back-up power generation and freeing up additional energy capacity to help alleviate the heat-induced demands on the state’s energy grid,” his office stated. “For the next several days, much of the West and Southwest are expected to see triple-digit heat, making it imperative that individuals take precautions to stay safe from the heat and do what they can to conserve energy.”
The same day, the state’s grid operator, the California Independent System Operator, advised that some of the customers served by PG&E might face rotating power outages, though it stressed that it was not calling for enforced blackouts.
On June 18, PG&E said there would be no rolling blackouts for its estimated 5mn customers in the northern two-thirds of California. The utility company said that, due to state-wide electricity conservation efforts, it did not see demand exceeding supply during the heat wave.
Hot weather is expected through the weekend. The state grid operators called on Californians to continue to voluntarily conserve energy.