ALBANY — New York is "well equipped" to meet expectations for peak power demands in the coming summer months, the coordinator of the state's electric grid reported Wednesday.

The New York Independent System Operator (NYISO) said the state has a total of 42,056 megawatts of power resources available -- an amount that is adequate to meet projected peak power demands.

Peak demand, which measures the average total electric demand for a one-hour period, is forecast to reach 32,382 megawatts in New York this summer, an increase of 1.5 percent above the state's 10-year average peak demand, according to the NYISO.

“The NYISO operates the grid to meet reliability rules that are among the strictest in the nation and are designed to ensure adequate supply.” Wes Yeomans, vice president of operations for NYISO, said.

The state's record peak was hit in July 2013, following a week-long heat wave. The use of air-conditioning increases the overall power usage, the grid operator said.

The forecast for peak demand is based on what NYISO called "normal" summer weather conditions. Should more extreme weather conditions develop, peak demand could rise to approximately 34,186 megawatts, the grid operator said.

The latest forecast of the state's energy demands follows a NYISO report issued last month that suggested the state's green energy goals face challenges due to a lack of transmission lines needed to move electricity from the upstate region to power hungry New York City.

New York weathered significant power blackouts in August 2003 and November 1965.

The latter disruption impacted several Northeast states and lasted for 13 hours for some utility customers. The 2003 blackout was widespread, impacting parts of the Northeast and the Midwest, as well as the Canadian province of Ontario.

It knocked out power for several hours though the outage lasted for two days in some regions.

 

Joe Mahoney covers the New York Statehouse for CNHI's newspapers and websites. Reach him at jmahoney@cnhi.com.