CommonWealth Magazine

NEW ENGLAND The power grid faced unusually cold temperatures and the outages of several power plants and transmission lines on Tuesday by commissioning additional plants and relying on oil and coal to generate about a fifth of the electricity. electricity in the region.

ISO-New England, the region’s power grid operator, said it issued an alert in the afternoon after the cold caused unexpected blackouts. Additional plants were commissioned before the evening peak demand period between 5:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m.

“We expect that we will have the resources to meet consumer demand and the necessary reserves of the power system throughout the evening,” said Matt Kakley, spokesperson for ISO-New England. “Barring further unforeseen outages, we don’t plan to implement any emergency measures tonight and we are not asking the public to conserve electricity at this time.”

Natural gas is the primary fuel used to generate electricity in New England, but due to the limited capacity of pipelines entering the region, its price and availability often vary widely as temperatures drop and demand for gasoline. gas for home heating increases.

As of 4 p.m. Tuesday, natural gas accounted for 43 percent of the region’s electricity production, well below its normal level. Nuclear power accounted for 22%, followed by petroleum at 17%, hydropower at 9%, renewables at 7% and coal at 3%. Normally, petroleum and coal are rarely used to generate electricity for the region.

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Editor, Commonwealth

On Bruce mohl

Bruce Mohl is the editor of Commonwealth magazine. Bruce came to Commonwealth from Boston Globe, where he spent nearly 30 years in a wide variety of positions spanning business and politics. He covered the Massachusetts State House and was the Worldhead of the State House bureau in the late 1980s. He also reported for the World‘s Spotlight Team, winning a Loeb Award in 1992 for coverage of conflicts of interest in the state pension system. It served as Worldpolitical editor in 1994 and continued to cover consumer issues for the newspaper. AT CommonwealthBruce helped launch the magazine’s website and has written on a wide range of topics with a particular focus on politics, tax policy, energy and gambling. Bruce is a graduate of Ohio Wesleyan University and the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. He lives in Dorchester.

On Bruce mohl

Bruce Mohl is the editor of Commonwealth magazine. Bruce came to Commonwealth from Boston Globe, where he spent nearly 30 years in a wide variety of positions spanning business and politics. He covered the Massachusetts State House and was the Worldhead of the State House bureau in the late 1980s. He also reported for the World‘s Spotlight Team, winning a Loeb Award in 1992 for coverage of conflicts of interest in the state pension system. It served as Worldpolitical editor in 1994 and continued to cover consumer issues for the newspaper. AT CommonwealthBruce helped launch the magazine’s website and has written on a wide range of topics with a particular focus on politics, tax policy, energy and gambling. Bruce is a graduate of Ohio Wesleyan University and the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. He lives in Dorchester.

Kakley said the greater use of oil and coal on Tuesday was due to economic reasons. “The gas available is expensive, which makes coal and oil cheaper than gas units, so they are shipped first,” he said.

The contribution of renewable energies to the region’s energy needs was split between wind power (39%), waste combustion (29%), wood combustion (28%), landfill gas (3%) and l solar energy (1%).

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