(Bloomberg) -- New England could face blackouts this winter if severe cold snaps and fuel supply disruptions strike at the same time, warns the region’s grid operator.
Although power plants and the transmission system in the area are well prepared for a mild winter, colder-than-average weather could threaten electricity supplies -- particularly if it happens when supplies of oil and liquefied natural gas have been disrupted, according to ISO New England Inc., which runs the region’s power grid.
“The region would be in a precarious position if an extended cold snap were to develop and these fuels were not available,” ISO’s Chief Executive Officer Gordon van Welie said Monday in a press release.
Blackouts could be triggered if the region experiences temperatures similar to the winter of 2013 and 2014, which brought several severe cold snaps, the operator warned. Still, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is predicting a warmer-than-average winter for the region. Should those conditions appear, grid operators don’t anticipate the need for emergency measures, including outages.
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