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Southwest Power Pool Removes Energy Emergency Alert; Regional Electric Grid Performing Well as LBK

(LUBBOCK, Texas)– Southwest Power Pool (SPP), the regional transmission grid currently supplying Lubbock Power & Light’s (LP&L) local electric grid, removed the Energy Emergency Alert (EEA) at 9:30 a.m. Thursday morning after elevating to Level 2 conditions Wednesday night. SPP remains in conservation mode. For the second morning in a row, SPP avoided having to issue controlled rotating outages for this region of the state Thursday morning, as they were able to bring more generation online to meet the morning demand for electricity.

While the SPP is no longer under EEA, LP&L and area electric providers continue to urge customers to conserve electricity for the next 24 hours as the winter storm is expected to dissipate moving into Friday. LP&L’s locally owned electric grid is performing well and shows no sign of being overloaded as record demand continues to put a heavy strain on the grid at home and across the region.

Extreme weather conditions and curtailed power generation in this region of the country caused electric reserve margins to reach a critical point on Tuesday requiring SPP to instruct all utilities in the regional power grid to perform controlled rotating outages. LP&L customers experienced these rotating outages for fifteen minutes early Monday afternoon and from 6 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday morning. Outside of these mandated rotating outages, customers experienced small-scattered outages throughout the past three days as the winter storm caused damage to equipment both on the LP&L grid and the adjacent Xcel Energy grid which feeds into our system.

Electric load forecasts predict that the historic strain on the SPP power grid will remain an issue until the winter storm passes. The amount of power consumed in this region dropped during key hours on Wednesday and again on Thursday, which contributed to avoiding another round of preventative actions being necessary. This drop in electric consumption and therefore demand on the system can be directly attributed to the efforts of our citizens to cut back on usage.

“We are grateful for our customers stepping up and doing their part to cut back on electric usage during this challenging time,” said David McCalla, Executive Director of LP&L. “The LP&L grid continues to perform at a high level and with the efforts of our customers and the additional generation capacity coming online in the regional grid, we have a pathway to finish out this historic winter storm without being called on to enact further controlled rotating outages.”

LP&L continues the stress that conservation efforts must be taken seriously but do understand that our customers need to perform everyday tasks as we enter the fourth day of this conservation call. Customers are encouraged to perform tasks such as washing dishes and doing laundry during the hours of 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. when system-wide electric usage is low. Keeping tasks that require large amounts of electricity to this timeframe will allow customers to perform necessary tasks without risking overburdening the regional electric grid.

Outside of the hours of 12 p.m. to 5 p.m., we ask customers to resume conservation efforts.

Suggestions on how reduce electricity use include:

  • Setting thermostats to 68 degrees or lower.

  • Suspending use of electrical appliances (dishwashers, washing machines, clothes dryers, vacuum cleaners, etc.)

  • Putting off tasks at work, if possible, that would demand electricity (power tools, maintenance equipment, etc.).

  • Turning off televisions and electronic equipment unless they are necessary to conduct business or to ensure your health and safety.

  • Turn off unnecessary lighting, leaving on only enough to move about safely indoors.

LP&L will continue to monitor weather and grid conditions and will update customers as new information becomes available.



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