Insights > Entergy Texas Winter Storm Update — 2/15/21 @ 2 p.m.

Entergy Texas Winter Storm Update — 2/15/21 @ 2 p.m.

02/15/2021

February 15, 2021                      Monday, 2:00 PM

Impact of Extreme Cold

  • The Entergy Texas western region is experiencing a record all-time load.
  • High electrical power demand has caused a power shortage and issues caused by the winter weather event are impacting generation units.

What We’re Doing

  • This morning, MISO, our grid operator, asked us to reduce 800 MW of energy usage due to these generation outages.
  • We are continuing to work to return generation to service to provide additional power to serve customers.  Two units are in initial startup, if successful, they will be operating to serve load this evening. Given the severity of the cold temperatures, this is subject to change.
  • We have been working to identify additional circuits to include in our outage rotation that do not have critical services such as hospitals. 
  • Our revised outage rotation will allow us to more routinely cycle customers on and off, starting with those who have been affected the longest.
  • We will continue this process until we are able to return our generation back to service.
  • Conservation by customers who have power is critical in allowing us to serve additional load. 

Cold Weather Restoration

We use a methodical and calculated process in bringing customers back online after an outage in very cold weather, regardless of whether the initial cause of the outage was specifically weather-related.

  • Rather than simply energizing an entire power line all at once, we must bring customers back online one section at a time to avoid damage to our system and make the situation worse.
  • During cold temperature extremes, customers tend to use a lot of electricity to keep heating or other devices running. Electric heaters often will run continuously, creating a constant power demand.
  • When power is disrupted during winter, many customers leave their heating systems and appliances turned on, creating too much energy demand all at once when we try to restore power.
  • Restoring all customers on the same power line has the potential to create large, instantaneous power demands. The instant demand could be higher than the built-in protective devices on a line can handle.
  • During extreme cold weather conditions, these specific restoration challenges are experienced not just by Entergy, but throughout the industry and the country.
  • Customers without power can help in the restoration process by turning off major appliances but leaving on a lamp or other light to indicate when power is restored. Then, gradually turn other appliances to spread out the increase in power usage over a longer time.

Texas Editorial Team