The Southwest Power Pool officials said enough power has been generated to shift Oklahoma back to an Energy Emergency Alert level 2.
The SPP first declared an Energy Emergency Alert level 3, which is the highest alert level, on Sunday, meaning that its “operating reserves are below the required minimum,” officials said in a press release.
According to The Southwest Power Pool’s website, it “manages the electric grid across 17 central and western U.S. states and provides energy services on a contract basis to customers.” This includes Oklahoma.
According to a press release, the Southwest Power Pool has “directed its member utilities to be prepared to implement controlled interruptions of service if necessary.”
“Controlled service interruptions are a last resort, and a step we take only when necessary to safeguard continued reliability of the regional grid,” said SPP’s Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Lanny Nickell.
This could mean rolling blackouts for Oklahomans, according to PSO officials.
According to a tweet from Southwest Power Pool, the company is directing member utilities to implement controlled interruptions of service effective immediately.
PSO-Oklahoma, OG&E, and every other power company connected to the southwest power grid, are in the same situation.
They are asking customers to limit electricity usage, to lower demand, so they can avoid being forced to shut off some circuits.
PSO-Oklahoma’s Stan Whiteford said “the notion would be, if we get to that point, is that so we can drop load, but not leave customers in the dark for very long, for an hour at the most."
OG&E also asked customers to conserve energy in a social media post.
OG&E said there are small steps customers can take:
"[S]et thermostats lower than usual, if health permits; avoid using major electric appliances; turn off lights and appliances that you do not need or are not using."
PSO Oklahoma said it will be interrupting power on orders from the Southwest Power Pool and said the process involves one-hour intervals.
PSO Oklahoma serves 232 cities and surrounding counties in Oklahoma.