It doesn't matter how hard the state of California tries to be a pioneer in the use of electric vehicles or in the transition to green energy; they just can't seem to get out of their own way. Their failure to acknowledge how unprepared the United States is to transition to a green economy and how this transition cannot be completed all at once represents a significant shortcoming for the state.
As a result of this deficiency, the state has been forced to issue warnings of imminent rolling blackouts and advise its inhabitants of the great burden that is being placed on their outdated electrical grid.
As a backup for the grid, the state has been forced to use its emergency gas generators, as was first reported by KMPH, an affiliate of Fox News. The California Independent System Operator issued down an order to the Department of Water Resources in Roseville and Yuba City to turn off four generators that had never been deployed in the state before.
These generators were put in place in 2021 specifically for use in the event of an emergency. They are able to generate 120 megawatts of power for the grid by burning natural gas. In a state with more than 39.2 million dwellings, this will provide electricity for 120,000 houses.
The fact that this is only a drop in the bucket illustrates how precarious the situation has become in its current state. The present heatwave that is affecting much of the western side of the United States, including California, is only making matters a great deal more difficult for the grid that serves the state.
Now, news of this nature should not come as a surprise.
Since the state began rolling blackouts through 800,000 homes and businesses in August 2020, the duration of each outage has ranged anywhere from fifteen minutes to several hours at a time. At the time, Governor Gavin Newsom took responsibility for the situation and stated that they had failed to take the required precautions to be ready.
After a delay of two years and the announcement of a target year of 2045 to transition to sole reliance on renewable energy, Governor Newsom has demonstrated that he has not the slightest idea about electricity.
Even more alarming than it was in 2020 is the fact that the state of California's electrical system is so stressed out right now because of the massive population loss that the state has seen over the past several years. On September 5th, Elliot Manzer, president and chief executive officer of the ISO, published a statement regarding the situation.
As the historic heat wave continues to worsen, we require a cut in energy use that is two to three times bigger than what we have seen so far. Manzer went on to propose that the state required "energy deficits" of 10% or more, else at least 3 million homes could find themselves without access to electricity.
During the last week of August, the ISO issued a warning to residents of California and suggested that they adjust the temperature on their thermostat to 78 degrees or higher. In order to make the most of the solar electricity, they suggested starting up the house's most power-hungry appliances and pre-cooling the inside while the sun was out.
They adopted a new position prior to the holiday weekend for Labor Day. Instead, they requested that consumers avoid purchasing major appliances, switch off lights that were not necessary, and refrain from charging their electric vehicles.
The state of California is already experiencing difficulties with its heavy reliance on electric cars due to the widespread movement toward the adoption of solar-powered cars and the conversion of residents' homes to be powered by solar energy. It is just not possible for their grid to keep up with the demands, which, given their composition, is not in the least bit surprising. The physical infrastructure is outdated and does not function as effectively as it once did.
However, the source of the energy is the primary contributor to the most of the issues.
At this time, solar energy accounts for 40.5% of California's total electricity generation. 32% comes from natural gas, much to the dismay of those who are passionate about the environment; 11.5% comes from wind; 11.1% comes from hydropower; 10.5% comes from nuclear power; and 0.1% comes from coal.
To cut to the chase, California's electrical needs are being satisfied through the utilization of an extremely wide variety of sources. However, this kind of dependency without sufficient backups is a risky idea, and one that they are already realizing can become catastrophic at any moment in time. Although this may appease the green energy people, it is a dangerous idea that should be avoided.
The preceding is a summary of an article that originally appeared on American People Daily.