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US grid operator issues cold warning for Central America – January 11, 2024

US grid operator issues cold warning for Central America – January 11, 2024

Grid operator Southwest Power Pool issued a cold warning for its 14-state central U.S. region on Thursday, warning of extreme arctic temperatures for the weekend and early next week.

The transmission system operator said it expects to have enough capacity to meet the expected increase in energy demand. However, he warned that a December 2022 winter storm could resemble Elliott's cold temperatures. The storm knocked out power to more than 1.5 million homes and businesses.

“The details, timing and full impact of the predicted storms are still highly uncertain,” the operator said in its statement.

SPP expects power to reach up to 45,000 megawatts (MW) on Monday and a maximum of 46,000 MW on Tuesday during cold weather. The previous winter peak load record was 47,157 MW, which was reached during a storm in 2022, the grid operator said.

The transmission system operator warned that wind energy production could experience a sharp drop during colder weather, and the risk of outages would be higher than usual due to increased energy demand.

On Wednesday, grid operators ERCOT and PJM Interconnection issued cold weather warnings.

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