PRESS RELEASE | New York’s Electric Grid Prepared to Meet Summer Demand
Rensselaer, NY -- The New York Independent System Operator (NYISO) today reported that electricity supplies in New York State are expected to be adequate this summer, with a total of 41,071 megawatts (MW) of power resources available to meet forecasted peak demand conditions.
“The state’s grid is well-positioned to handle forecasted summer demand,” said Wes Yeomans, Vice President of Operations for the NYISO. “In addition to robust planning processes and thorough stakeholder engagement, the NYISO operates the grid to meet reliability rules that are among the strictest in the nation and are designed to ensure adequate supply.”
Summer Demand Forecast
The NYISO forecasts that peak demand this summer will reach 32,327 MW, an increase of 31 MW from the 2020 baseline forecast and 2.3 percent above the 10-year average peak of 31,587 MW. Last summer’s peak demand of 30,660 MW was recorded on July 27th.
In July 2013, New York recorded a record peak of 33,956 MW at the end of a weeklong heat wave. Peak demand is a measurement of the average total electric demand by consumers for a one-hour period. One megawatt of electricity can serve approximately 800-1,000 homes.
Demand on New York’s electric system peaks in the summer as air conditioning drives overall power usage higher. While the electricity system must be prepared to meet peak load conditions, average demand is typically far less.
The peak demand forecast is based on normal expected summer weather conditions. The NYISO also evaluates the potential for more extreme weather scenarios. The NYISO’s analysis for this summer found that peak demand could increase under more extreme conditions to approximately 34,321 MW.
Reliability Requirements and Resource Availability
New York’s electric system is operated under reliability standards that include an installed reserve margin requirement and operating reserves to cover the potential loss of the system’s largest single resource of electricity. In 2021, the operating reserve requirement is 2,620 MW. The combination of the peak demand forecast and operating reserve results in a total capacity requirement of 34,947 MW.
The total capacity of power resources available to New York this summer is expected to be 41,071 MW. Available resources include 37,789 MW of generating capacity from power plants in New York State and 2,087 MW of net purchases and sales from neighboring regions capable of supplying energy to New York.
In addition to power plant generating capacity and the ability to import power from neighboring regions, 1,195 MW of demand response resources are available. Demand response programs enlist large users of electricity and aggregations of smaller power customers to reduce electricity consumption when called upon by the NYISO.
The effect of energy efficiency programs, distributed solar photovoltaics, and non-solar distributed resources are also included in the NYISO’s forecast. These resources moderate the growth of peak load and reduce overall energy usage from the grid.