Another Nuclear Plant Closes: Get Ready For Electricity Shortages

America’s electric grid is being mismanaged and consumers will pay a heavy price for that mismanagement…

More evidence of that came with the recent closure of the Palisades Power Plant in MichiganThe 811-megawatt nuclear plant was shut down on the same day that the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) issued a report saying the U.S. electric grid doesn’t have enough generation capacity and that blackouts are almost certain to occur across the country this summer.

In particular, NERC noted that the Midwest is facing a capacity shortfall that could lead to a “high risk of energy emergencies during peak summer conditions.” Palisades was located in the heart of the Midwest, immediately adjacent to the area served by the Mid-continent Independent System Operator (MISO), the region that NERC identified as being particularly short on juice. NERC said the MISO region has 3,200 megawatts less generation capacity this summer than it did in 2021. Despite this loss of generation capacity, NERC expects demand in the region to increase by about 1.7 percent this summer and warned that “extreme temperatures, higher generation outages, or low wind conditions” will mean that MISO will have a “higher risk” of “load-shedding to maintain system reliability” — the industry’s preferred term for rolling blackouts.

In a phone interview, Meredith Angwin, author of the 2020 book, “Shorting The Grid,” told me, “It is shocking to me how people can pretend this isn’t a problem. NERC just said the Midwest is headed for trouble this summer because the region doesn’t have enough reliable generation — and yet, they are closing Palisades. It doesn’t make any sense.”

Palisades was a zero-carbon workhorse. As Tim Cavanaugh of the Mackinac Center for Public Policy explained recently, Palisades was producing about 7 terawatt-hours of juice per year. That’s more energy than is generated by all the wind turbines in Michigan. It’s a key comparison because the backlash against the wind industry has been fierce in Michigan. Among the latest examples, last month the town board in Fulton Township voted unanimously to reject a project proposed by Chicago-based Invenergy that would put several dozen wind turbines in and around the township.- READ MORE