The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) continues to closely monitor critical efforts to restore power as quickly as possible and ensure the safety of people in the Midwest and Southern states that were hard hit by extreme winter weather earlier this week. FERC remains in contact with the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), Southwest Power Pool (SPP) and the Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO) as they work to restore service on their systems.
FERC and the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) have initiated an inquiry into how the bulk power system operated during the record cold and wintry conditions, but FERC Chairman Rich Glick today stressed that the immediate focus remains on restoring power to customers and securing the reliability of the grid.
“Our hearts go out this morning to the millions of people in Texas and across the country who remain without power, as well as those served by utilities in MISO and SPP who experienced rolling blackouts this week in the midst of extreme winter weather,” Glick said. “We all know power outages are always challenging. But losing power for days during an historic and prolonged cold snap constitutes a humanitarian crisis. People are, literally, dying.
“This is simply unacceptable,” Glick added. “The short-term focus must be on restoring power to the grid. But we also have a responsibility to ensure this does not happen again.”
As part of the inquiry, FERC and NERC staff will work with other federal agencies, states, regional entities and utilities to identify problems with the performance of the bulk-power system as well as appropriate solutions to address those issues.