Summer Assessment Warns of Potential Energy Shortfalls

ATLANTA – NERC’s 2021 Summer Reliability Assessment warns that parts of North America are at elevated or high risk of energy shortfalls this summer during above-normal peak temperatures.

While NERC’s risk scenario analysis shows adequate resources and energy for most of North America, Texas, New England, MISO and parts of the West are at an “elevated risk” of energy emergencies. In the “high risk” category is California, which relies on large energy imports during peak demand scenarios and when solar resource output retreats in the evening hours. While more than 3 GW of additional resources are expected in California this summer compared to 2020, most will be solar photovoltaic (PV) generation.

These plants can provide energy to support peak demand, however solar PV output falls off rapidly in late afternoon while high demand often remains. Reliance on imports during these periods is an increasing reliability risk. While actions taken by the California Public Utilities Commission, CAISO and utilities to procure additional resources will help, the Western Interconnection’s increase in demand and decline in resources may reduce the amount of surplus capacity available when California is in shortfall.

Full Announcement | 2021 SRA Infographic

Posted On: 05/26/2021