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Why the Texas Reliability Event on February 26, 2008 Raises No Concerns About Much Higher Wind Penetration

March 18, 2008

On February 26, 2008, a drop in frequency on Texas' transmission grid caused the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) to put in place an Emergency Electric Curtailment Plan (EECP).

ERCOT will initiate and coordinate the implementation of an EECP when it is necessary to reduce electrical demand because of a temporary decrease in available electricity supply. The objective of the EECP is to provide for maximum possible continuity of service while maintaining the integrity of the ERCOT Transmission Grid in order to reduce the chance of cascading outages.

The February 26 the drop in frequency was successfully managed and no customers involuntarily lost power. The event, however, was reported in some media outlets as having been caused by a sudden drop in output from wind projects.

The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) has pulled together important background information (PDF 41 KB) Download Adobe Reader and highlights from the report issued by ERCOT on the event. This provides both perspective on the event and insights into the issues going forward.

—Julie Jones