On Friday, California energy officials released a sober forecast for the state’s power grid, saying it lacked enough power to sustain light this summer and beyond when heat, forest fires or other extreme events take their toll.
California is pursuing one of the most aggressive climate change policies in the world, including setting itself the goal of producing all of its electricity from carbon-free sources by 2045. At an online briefing with reporters, officials predicted a potential deficit of 1,700 megawatts this year. A figure that could reach 5,000 MW if the grid is taxed due to numerous problems that reduce available capacity while increasing demand, government officials said during an online briefing with reporters. Gaps in supplies along these lines could leave between 1 million and 4 million people without electricity.
Shutdowns will only occur in extreme conditions, officials warned, and will depend in part on the success of conservation measures.