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Icy Texas weather leads to new winter record for state power usage

January 17, 2018

The temperature got so low in Texas early Wednesday morning that the state broke a new winter record for power usage, according to the agency that manages the state’s power grid.  

Despite the high demand, the Electric Reliability Council of Texas says the state’s power supply is keeping up. At least one power company — CPS Energy in San Antonio — had warned customers that the state might be forced to impose rolling 15-minute outages to balance demand during the coldest part of Wednesday. 

An ERCOT spokeswoman said Wednesday morning that the state didn’t have to implement any emergency procedures or require any conservation.   

At one point between 7 and 8 a.m. Wednesday, the state was using 65,731 megawatts of power. That’s more than 4 percent higher than the previous wintry record, which was set this month. It’s still below the summer peak of more than 71,000 megawatts. 

The state may soon be out of the woods as temperatures began to climb in the early afternoon. During the morning, the temperature in much of the state was in the teens or 20s.  

This article originally appeared in The Texas Tribune at https://www.texastribune.org/2018/01/17/icy-texas-weather-leads-new-winter-record-state-power-usage/.

The Texas Tribune is a nonprofit, nonpartisan media organization that informs Texans — and engages with them — about public policy, politics, government and statewide issues.

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