FRESNO, California (KGPE) – As the state’s electrical supply is pushed to its limit during the heatwave, on Monday, power outages threatened about 3 million homes and businesses in California.
Around 8 p.m. the California Independent System Operator lifted its stage 2 declaration meaning there was enough energy to avoid blackouts.
Earlier in the day, a power outage alert was sent to customers from PG&E warning of potential 1-2 hour rolling outages between the hours of 3-10 p.m. An unwelcome notice amid a heatwave and a pandemic.
The rotating power outages began Friday after the state’s grid operator warned the demand for energy during the heatwave was pushing the supply to its limit. Hundreds of thousands of
Californians lost power for an hour or two over the weekend.
“I am not pleased with what happened,” said Governor Gavin Newsom during a Monday press conference.
Gov. Newsom is calling for an investigation into the state’s energy regulators for their failure to properly brace for the current energy shortage and power outages.
“We failed to predict and plan for these shortages and that’s simply unacceptable,” said Newsom.
“This is the consequence of politics, not of a heatwave,” said assemblyman Jim Patterson.
Patterson, also vice-chair of the utilities and energy committee, says it’s not about the demand but lack of supply, saying California’s renewable energy sources are unreliable and buying from other states is too expensive.
“As a result of this heavy reliance on unreliable electricity like wind, the wind doesn’t always blow or solar, the sun goes down every night, we now have a huge gap between the electricity we need and the electricity we have,” said Patterson.
In the meantime, PG&E is urging everyone to conserve energy into the week to help prevent more outages.
“We are on stand by and we want our customers to be prepared and conservation is the most important thing we can all do right now,” said PG&E spokesperson Angela Lombardi.