Weekly Power Outlet US - 2024 - Week 24

PJM CP Season, ERCOT Data Mining, Happy Flag Day

Weekly Power Outlet US - 2024 - Week 24
Photo by chris robert / Unsplash

PJM CP Season, ERCOT Data Mining, Happy Flag Day

Energy Market Update Week 24, brought to you by Acumen.

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white sand beach with stalls under blue sky
Photo by Jason Briscoe / Unsplash

Summer is here! Beaches, sunscreen, baseball, BBQ picnics, and hot weather alerts. PJM issued a hot weather alert Wednesday for yesterday and extended it into today. ERCOT and the south got off to an early start last week, and now it's PJM's turn.

Source: Helios Software Alert

In PJM, along with a hot weather alert being the start of summer, it kicks off the summer RTO coincident peak (5CP) season. For those not familiar, load customers are charged a fee to be on the grid. In simple terms, that charge is determined by an average of your load, or electrical usage, during the five highest demand hours in the RTO during the summer. It has become an industry of its own trying to predict those hours and directing load customers to cut their electricity usage during those hours. Lower usage means lower capacity charge which can lead to substantial savings if you are able to reduce your electricity demand. For those scoring at home, last year's fifth highest peak demand was 137.8k MW on the afternoon of July 5 and the highest 146.8 on July 27. Yesterday's forecasted peak was 129.5k and today's is 127k. The fun part of this game is the scoreboard can change right up to the end of September so don't let your guard down during those dog days of summer.

white and black ship on water during nighttime
Photo by sergey raikin / Unsplash

ERCOT President and CEO Pablo Vegas was in front of the Texas Senate Business Commerce Committee this week speaking about the need for capacity growth to meet the rising demand. Previous estimates had ERCOT estimating demand of around 110 MW by 2030, but Vegas dwarfed that number by announcing the new estimate was near 150 MW. The increased demand is coming from growth in crypto mining and data centers. Texas has set up an energy fund that provides incentives for new generation investments to be built to serve ERCOT. Judging by some of the comments from the legislators, they were defiantly caught off guard and took some shots at data mining. Comments on X from the office of Lt Gov Dan Patrick said, "We want data centers, but it can’t be the Wild Wild West of data centers and crypto miners crashing our grid and turning the lights off.". Also, crypto mining may actually make more money selling electricity back to the grid than from their crypto mining operations.".

Interestingly enough, Riot Platforms, Inc. a self described "industry leader in vertically integrated Bitcoin mining", announced in public filings they had earned $7.3 million in demand response in ERCOT in May.

American flag lot
Photo by Valentino Funghi / Unsplash

There's some debate on exactly when Besty Ross fulfilled the request of George Washington and delivered the first flag, but it was around the 1776-77 time as the US was born. Since that first flag, there have been 27 new variations of the flag as colonies and territories became states. While celebration of the flag had been around in various forms for years, in 1916 President Woodrow Wilson issued the proclamation that established June 14 as Flag Day. Today is the day to fly Old Glory just a little bit higher with pride as we celebrate it, and in American tradition, probably get 20% off an air conditioner on some sale in the name of this day. Happy Flag Day everyone!



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