Regional power grid operated reliably through summer heat

With summer behind us, we can officially say it wasn’t one for the record books—at least not for power system operations in the six-state region.

The New England power grid operated reliably throughout the warmest months of the year, despite some initial challenges. At the onset of summer, the ISO was informed that deliveries of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to some generators serving Northeast Massachusetts and Greater Boston were uncertain or could be reduced as a result of global supply disruptions. To mitigate the potential for reliability issues, the ISO worked with local generation and transmission companies to develop special operating plans; however, the need to implement the special plans never arose.

New England’s consumer demand topped out at 25,853 megawatts (MW) on July 17, which is a lower peak demand than was forecast for summer 2012. This was mainly due to the lack of long stretches of hot days and increased energy efficiency efforts.

Summer of 2012 at a glance:

  • Peak demand:  25,853 megawatts (MW) on Tuesday, July 17

    • Last year’s peak: 27,707 MW on July 22, 2011
    • All-time peak: 28,130 MW on August 2, 2006

  • Average temperature, June through August: 71.31 degrees Fahrenheit; the sixth warmest in the last 53 years
  • Total electricity consumption, June, July and August: 36,555 GWh; fourth highest since 1999
  • No emergency operating procedures were implemented