Transmission limitations and tight capacity margins this summer will create the potential for electrical grid reliability problems in southwestern Connecticut and southern Nevada, respectively, according to the North American Electric Reliability Council’s (NERC) 2002 Summer Assessment. The problems are contingent upon any delays in the installation of new resources, lower than expected generating unit availability, or extreme weather.

However, generating resources will be adequate to meet projected demand for electricity in the remainder of North America this summer, according to the report. It acknowledges the potential for congestion but also states that transmission systems in North America are expected to perform reliably.

Areas with a history of power reliability problems in recent years like California, New York City, and Long Island are expected to have adequate capacity margins throughout the summer. California has added nearly 5,000 MW of generating resources, while New York City and Long Island have upped their generating capacity by almost 450 MW.

“Capacity margins have increased substantially in several areas of North America during the past year,” says Michehl R. Gent, president and CEO of NERC. “And although much of North America is experiencing drought conditions, we do not expect this to materially impact reliability.”

The full report is available at www.nerc.com/~filez/rasreports.html.