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2nd ‘grid alert’ within 24 hours briefly issued for Alberta on Wednesday afternoon

Click to play video: 'With electricity rates set to hit record highs in October, how prepared is Alberta for winter?'
With electricity rates set to hit record highs in October, how prepared is Alberta for winter?
Alerts were sent out Tuesday and Wednesday about power grid issues in Alberta, and it comes as electricity is about to get more expensive. Dan Grummett looks into how prepared we are for the winter cold and furnaces everywhere coming online. – Sep 28, 2022

Less than 24 hours after a grid alert advising Albertans that the province’s power system was under strain, the entity responsible for issuing such warnings issued a new alert on Wednesday afternoon.

At 4:18 p.m., the Alberta Electric System Operator said the province was “preparing to use emergency reserves to meet demand and maintain system reliability” and called on Albertans to temporarily cut back their energy consumption until the system can return to balance.

At 5:28 p.m., AESO said it had lifted the alert.

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AESO did not say what prompted Wednesday’s alert.

READ MORE: Albertans asked to cut back on electricity use Tuesday night as ‘grid alert’ issued for province

The organization said Tuesday’s alert, which remained in effect for about two-and-a-half hours, was primarily triggered because of the combination of an unexpected generator outage and a planned outage of the Alberta-B.C. interconnection, which meant Alberta could not import electricity to make up the shortfall.

Stress on the power system has been felt in Alberta during cold snaps and heat waves in recent years. The fact the grid alerts were issued in the fall concerned Blake Shaffer, an assistant professor of economics at the University of Calgary.

“The fact that we’re at risk of a supply shortfall here in September — through a confluence of reasons — is alarming,” he told Global News on Wednesday.

“It’s something that should be raising questions.”

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