ERCOT issues winter weather watch

As a strong arctic front makes its way to Texas bringing frigid temperatures, the Electric Reliability Council of Texas or ERCOT has issued a winter weather watch effective through Sunday as winter weather moves through the state.

ERCOT is forecasting high energy demand for the duration of the winter weather. This cold front will bring freezing temperatures and precipitation to the ERCOT region, the agency said in a media release.

The colder weather is expected to arrive in the Rio Grande Valley early Thursday. The highs will start out in the 60s in the morning and the temperature will drop throughout the day and end up in the 40s. The lows on Thursday night will be in the 30s.

In preparation of the expected increase in demand, ERCOT in Jan. 28 issued an Operating Condition Notice (OCN) to the electricity market for extreme winter weather. ERCOT projects to have sufficient generation to meet the high demand for electricity.

Jones said “While grid conditions remain strong with enough capacity, our weather forecasts show there is potential for significant frozen precipitation behind this week’s cold front. With frozen precipitation there is always a chance for local outages caused by things like ice on wires or fallen tree limbs. These local outages are not related to the amount of available electricity generated and put on the grid. Texans should contact their utility in the event they experience a localized outage.”