PUCT echoes ERCOT conservation appeal ahead of expected tight grid conditions 

AUSTIN The Public Utility Commission of Texas is echoing a call from the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) asking Texans to conserve electricity use, if safe to do so, from 6 a.m.– 10 a.m. CT Jan. 15.

Due to continued freezing temperatures, very high demand and unseasonably low wind, operating reserves for the Texas power grid are expected to be low Jan. 15, before sunrise. ERCOT is expecting similar conditions Jan. 16.

ERCOT is not experiencing emergency conditions at this time. ERCOT will remain vigilant and communicate further if emergency operations are necessary due to continued freezing temperatures and very high demand in the morning hours. The PUCT and ERCOT continue to monitor weather conditions and will keep the public informed through their websites and social media channels, a news release said.

ERCOT is requesting all government agencies (including city and county offices) implement all programs to reduce energy use at their facilities.

Important consumer information

Outages: If you are experiencing an outage at this time, it is local in nature and not related to overall grid reliability. Please check with your local electricity provider for more information.

Storm Resources Page: The PUCT’s Storm Resources page includes links to utility outage maps and contact information for local electricity provider. https://www.puc.texas.gov/storm/default.aspx

Disconnections: The PUCT’s Consumer Protection rules prohibit electricity providers from disconnecting customers in Texas counties that are experiencing extreme weather conditions. More information on disconnection moratoriums and which counties are currently affected is available https://www.puc.texas.gov/consumer/complaint/rights.aspx

Contact the PUCT: If you are experiencing and outage, first, contact your local utility provider for assistance. The PUCT’s Consumer Protection Division (CPD) staff will be working Monday, Jan. 15 (Martin Luther King Jr. Day) to answer calls and emails from consumers for additional help. To contact CPD, email consumer@puc.texas.gov or call 1-888-782-8477.

Conservation is a widely used industry tool that can help lower demand for a specific period of peak demand time. ERCOT and the PUCT are asking Texans to take simple power conservation steps to reduce demand on the grid. The PUCT’s website has tips for reducing electricity use in homes and businesses. https://www.puc.texas.gov/consumer/facts/save.aspx

PUCT emergency management staff members are on duty in the Texas State Operations Center, monitoring the weather and coordinating closely with ERCOT, Texas Division of Emergency Management, Texas Department of Transportation and other state agency partners.

ERCOT continues to use all available tools to manage the grid reliably, including using reserve power, calling upon reductions by large electric customers that have volunteered to lower their energy use, and bringing more generation online sooner. ERCOT is also working with neighboring Independent System Operators (ISOs) and Market Participants to obtain additional power generation capacity. ERCOT has also requested Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) enforcement discretion, which allows a generator to extend its service/run-time/operations to help meet demand, if needed, and maintain grid reliability.

Stay updated

>> Check the PUCT’s Storm Resources page for outage maps and utility provider contact information. https://www.ercot.com/txans

>> Monitor real-time and extended conditions at https://www.ercot.com/

Subscribe to ERCOT Emergency Alerts which are not sent through TXANS notifications.

Follow the PUCT and ERCOT on X (formerly Twitter) (@PUCT and @ERCOT_ISO), Facebook (Public Utility Commission of Texas and Electric Reliability Council of Texas), and LinkedIn (Public Utility Commission of Texas and ERCOT).