California power outages? Summer heat will be key factor

California officials responsible for the state’s electric grid are scrambling to avoid blackouts in southern California this summer following news that a major nuclear power plant will be offline indefinitely.

The effort to avoid a repeat of the costly power outages that plagued the state in 2000 and 2001 includes bringing old plants back online, commissioning new transmission lines and activating a multipronged emergency response system to cut power demand at peak times.

“We’re not forecasting blackouts, but during very hot periods, either a very hot day or an extended heat wave, there are going to be challenges in southern California,” said Steven Greenlee, a spokesman for the California Independent System Operator, which manages the power grid that serves 30 million people.

Click here to read more.