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‘Things Are Going to Break’: Texas Power Plants Are Running Nonstop

Operators are forced to defer maintenance as aging fleet is ‘run harder than it’s ever been run.’

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Why Blackouts are Coming This Summer

As searing Texas heat drives power demand to record highs, the state’s grid operator is ordering plants to run at a historic pace, often forcing them to put off maintenance to keep cranking out electricity. That’s helped keep the lights on, for now, but the short-term focus is putting even more stress on a system that’s already stretched near the limit. 

Twice in the past week, officials have called on Texans to limit electricity use during scorching afternoons as demand inched perilously close to overwhelming supply. Now, there are growing concerns over how long power plants can maintain the grueling pace as they run nonstop, according to Michele Richmond, executive director of Texas Competitive Power Advocates, a generator industry group.