Copied from fakebook:
A head’s up, folks. I make electricity for a living at our power plant. Electricity is a commodity traded just like anything else on the open market. Prices fluctuate constantly. However, I saw something yesterday that hasn’t happened since Enron caused blackouts back in the early 2000’s. Prices for a megawatt of electricity were extremely high. On an average day in the past prices were usually around $20 to $50 per MW. All day yesterday, prices were between $1400 and $2600. In my 20+ years in this industry, I have never seen prices over $2000, and they were like that much of the afternoon. Why? Because we don’t have enough generation. Supply and demand. Yesterday’s load in our part of the country was about 130 gigawatts. Today’s forecast is 140GW. Tomorrow, probably around 150GW as this heat wave heads east. In the entire region we have about 150GW of generation capacity, including windmills that don’t make any power in the summer because there is not enough actual wind to turn them. Due to high fuel prices (yes, we burn natural gas, a lot of it, to make power) plants won’t even start unless the price of electricity is 2 to 3 times what it has been in the past. Two years ago natural gas cost $1.75 per decatherm. Today, it’s eight bucks. Prepare yourselves for rolling blackouts this summer. It’s coming. Your electric bill is going to triple, if not worse. The hotter it is outside, the worse it will be. Fair warning.
Also from David Dearing
Oh, one other thing I forgot to mention. Our section of Illinois (the Chicago area) is connected to PJM, which serves Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, Kentucky, Ohio, northern Indiana, and Illinois. In Illinois, they passed a new emissions law, so we are limited as far as how much we can run. We have two plants, and one plant already has 40% of their generation off market- they can’t start again until October. We expect the entire plant to run out of time by the end of this month. The plant I run will probably be out of time mid July. It’s like that all over the state. So the total generation capacity will shrink as the months get hotter. They will have no choice but to start rolling blackouts with no generation available. With plants like ours offline, power prices will rise to unseen levels, record breaking levels. People don’t think. And now we are going to pay the price.