ERCOT’s projections, included in its most recent Seasonal Assessment of Resource Adequacy Report, cover the months of March, April and May and apply to normal operating conditions and various risk scenarios.
ERCOT, the state’s primary grid operator, projects the state will have sufficient electricity generation on hand for the upcoming spring season.
ERCOT’s projections, included in its most recent Seasonal Assessment of Resource Adequacy Report, cover the months of March, April and May and apply to normal operating conditions and various risk scenarios. The Electric Reliability Council of Texas released the “SARA” on March 17.
The SARA projects the capacity planning reserve margin for the spring months at 52.5 percent. That level is well above ERCOT’s target reserve margin of 13.75 percent, and should be enough to cover unexpected generation outages, lower-than-expected renewable output and higher-than-expected customer demand.
The reserve margin is defined as the additional generating capacity available on the system beyond that needed to ensure system reliability during a period of peak use, and generally is expressed in percentage terms. ERCOT commonly enjoys comparatively high reserve margins during spring months because of the milder weather conditions.
Peak Demand, Available Capacity
The new report forecasts peak demand during the spring at 64,729 megawatts, as compared to 94,394 megawatts of available capacity. It also notes that since the start of the winter, that 31 generating units have received approval for interconnection with the grid. “These units are comprised of wind, solar, and energy storage projects that total 1,027 MW,” ERCOT reported.
The report includes examinations of 14 discrete scenarios. The entire SARA can be found here. For more information about the Capacity Planning Reserve Margin and other ERCOT terms, see the glossary found here.