America’s largest electric grid operator has declared an emergency amid high temperatures and issued an alert warning the public to “prepare generators.” The emergency alert was issued across the East Coast and Midwest. On Friday, PJM Interconnection LLC, which serves 13 states, declared another Energy Emergency Alert Level 1.
The alert was the second in a week as fears of an electrical grid failure mount.
Excessive heat advisories and warnings cover a number of areas across those states—from Illinois to New Jersey.
A map updated by the National Weather Service (NWS) on Friday shows that heat advisories and warnings inundate large swaths of where PJM Interconnection serves.
The agency has suggested that more emergency alerts may follow.
The NWS suggests that further heatwaves throughout this week could trigger more emergency alerts.
“Dangerous heat peaks in the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, and Midwest today and Saturday before a cold front provides these regions with a welcomed return of cooler and more comfortable temperatures Sunday,” said the NWS on its website on Friday.
“Excessive heat continues in the Southwest U.S. through Saturday before a new heat wave builds across the South and Gulf Coast early next week, and persists through the week.”
A day before, the grid operator issued a similar level-one emergency due to heat.
It said that its preliminary peak load was around 148,000 megawatts and is forecast to peak at around 155,000 megawatts on Friday evening.
“PJM has issued these alerts to help prepare generators for the onset of intense heat,” the operator also said, referring to gas-powered generators.
“A Hot Weather Alert helps to prepare transmission and generation personnel and facilities for extreme heat and/or humidity that may cause capacity problems on the grid.
“Temperatures are expected to be near or above 90 degrees in these regions, which drives up the demand for electricity,” it added.
On Thursday, utility spokesman Jeffrey Shields told The Associated Press that PJM “currently has enough generation to meet forecast demand, but operators continue to monitor the grid conditions for any changes.”
A similar alert was also issued on Thursday by Midcontinent Independent System Operator, which mostly covers states in the Midwest and Northern Plains.
Many have noted that the green agenda policies of Democrat President Joe Biden’s administration have put excessive pressure on the nation’s energy supply.
Notably, PJM published a report earlier in 2023 that suggested that Biden’s policies to de-carbonize the grid are “present[ing] increasing reliability risks during the transition, due to a potential timing mismatch between resource retirements, load growth and the pace of new generation entry.”
“De-carbonization” refers to the reduction of fossil fuels and greater reliance on solar, wind, and hydroelectric power.