Riverside, California 2021-02-17 14:07:55 –
Extreme temperature disruptions to Texas’ natural gas business and its entire supply chain are the most important cause of a power crisis that doesn’t heat and electricity millions of Texas people during the winter storms that hit the United States.
From frozen natural gas wells to frozen wind turbines, all power sources faced difficulties during the winter storm. However, experts say the Texans relies heavily on natural gas, especially for peak power generation and heat generation.
Officials at the Texas Power Reliability Council, or ERCOT, which manages most of the Texas grid, said Tuesday’s power outages seemed to be primarily due to state natural gas suppliers. Many are not designed to withstand such low temperatures in equipment or manufacturing.
Almost half of the state’s natural gas production has plummeted due to extremely cold temperatures, according to some estimates, but freezing of components in natural gas-fired power plants has forced some operators to shut down. It was.
“Texas is in a state of gas,” said Michael Weber, a professor of energy resources at the University of Texas at Austin. He said all Texas energy sources share responsibility for the power crisis, but at least one nuclear power plant has been partially shut down. In particular, the natural gas industry produces significantly less electricity than usual.
“Gas is currently failing in the most spectacular way,” Webber said.
According to Dan Woodfin, senior director of ERCOT, more than half of ERCOT’s winter power generation capacity was primarily powered by natural gas and was offline due to storms. It is estimated to be 45 gigawatts.
The outage during this storm far exceeded what ERCOT predicted for an extreme winter event in November. The forecast for peak demand was 67 gigawatts. Peak usage during the storm was over 69 gigawatts on Sunday.
It is estimated that approximately 80% of the grid’s capacity, or 67 gigawatts, can be produced by natural gas, coal, and some nuclear power. Only 7% of ERCOT’s projected winter capacity, or 6 gigawatts, was expected to come from a variety of state-wide wind farms.
Woodfin said Tuesday that 16 gigawatts of renewable energy generation (mainly wind power) is offline and 30 gigawatts of heat sources, including gas, coal and nuclear power, are offline.
“Many of the generations offline today seem to be primarily due to problems with the natural gas system,” Woodfin said in a phone call with reporters Tuesday.
Natural gas production in the state has plummeted, making it difficult for power plants to obtain the fuel they need to operate their power plants. According to experts, natural gas power plants usually do not store much fuel on the premises. Instead, the plant relies on a constant flow of natural gas from pipelines that cross the state from areas like the Permian Basin in western Texas to major demand centers like Houston and Dallas.
In early February, Texas operators were producing about 24 billion cubic feet per day, according to S & P Globalplatz estimates. But on Monday, Texas production plummeted to just a small part of it. State operators produced somewhere between 12 and 17 billion cubic feet per day.
The system for getting gas from the earth is not properly constructed due to cold weather. Operators in the Permian Basin in western Texas, one of the most productive oil fields in the world, said operators said that cold and snow could close wells and cause power outages that could prevent fossil fuels from being pumped. I am particularly struggling to bring natural gas to the surface. From the ground.
“The collection line freezes and the wells get cold and can’t be produced,” said Parker Faucet, a natural gas analyst at S & P Global Platts. “And because the pump uses electricity, it doesn’t even have the power to generate, so it can’t even lift that gas or liquid.”
According to experts, Texas does not have as much storage capacity as other states. Because resource-rich states can easily be pulled off the ground when needed.
Of the storage that the state has, it’s a little harder to get resources. Luke Jackson, another natural gas analyst at S & P Global Platts, said that the physical recovery of stored natural gas is slower than the immediate ready supply of the line from production and is dramatic in production. He said it was not enough to make up for the decline.
Experts say some power plants were already offline before the crisis began, adding to the problem. ERCOT predicted a 4 gigawatt maintenance outage during the winter. Texas power plants typically maintain and renew their power plants during the mild winter months, in preparation for extreme power and power demand during the summer. It also puts a strain on the grid supply.
Another winter issue: Burning natural gas to warm homes and hospitals.
“In the summer, we don’t burn natural gas directly,” said Daniel Cohan, an associate professor of civil engineering at Rice University. “Peak-time demand during the summer is everything. I pointed out. For electricity.
The state last experienced such a major freeze in 2011, ten years ago. At that time, there was still a problem with the production of natural gas. If ERCOT did not relieve the load due to rolling blackouts that took place during the storm, it would have widespread consequences. A federal report on power outages and storms across the region warned.
According to experts, it is possible to “winter” natural gas power plants, natural gas production and wind turbines, which causes such in other states with more regular extreme winter weather. You can prevent major interruptions. However, even after the upgrade following the 2011 winter storm, many Texas generators have not yet made all the necessary investments to prevent the kind of disruption that occurs in their equipment.
The ERCOT director also said that this week’s storm turned early Monday morning and very low temperatures took far more generators offline than ERCOT expected.
“The cold weather we were doing seemed to work, but the weather was more extreme than (past storms),” Woodfin said. “Monday morning, the loss of generations after midnight was part of what made this a more extreme event than we had planned.”
Le Xie, a professor of electrical and computer engineering at the University of Texas A & M, offers incentives to save power and upgrade to smart appliances by upgrading equipment to withstand cryogenic and other changes. By doing so, it is possible to avoid such disasters. Assistant Director of Energy Digitization at A & M Energy Research Institute.
“In places like Texas, I wasn’t really worried about these extreme colds before, but in the future I’ll need more preparation,” says Xie. With climate change, he said, “it will be more extreme weather conditions across the country.”
— Jolie McCullough contributed to the report.
Disclosure: Rice University, The University of Texas at Austin, and the University of Texas at Austin are financial backers of the Texas Tribune, a non-profit, non-partisan news organization, partially funded by donations from members, foundations, and corporate sponsors. Financial supporters play no role in tribune journalism.
“Texas relies heavily on natural gas for electricity. It wasn’t ready for the cold.” By Texas Tribune https://www.texastribune.org/2021/02/16/natural-gas-power First published on -storm /. Texas Tribune is proud to celebrate a decade of exceptional journalism for exceptional states.
Texas relies on natural gas for power. It wasn’t ready for cold Source link Texas relies on natural gas for power. It wasn’t ready for cold