Wind power set a new generation record on the California Independent System Operator Corp. (CA-ISO) system Friday, but the mark lasted only two days before being eclipsed Sunday, CA-ISO said in a news release.
Sunday's record was set when turbines on the system topped out at 4,196 megawatts (MW) at 6:44 p.m. CA-ISO is the main operator for the state’s high-voltage network, serving about 80 percent of the Golden State.
On Friday, total wind levels surpassed the 4,000-MW milestone when 4,095 MW helped to power California. Previously, the all-time record peak output for wind energy was 3,944 MW, reached March 3. After Sunday's record, wind levels remained high and again crossed the 4,000-MW mark on Monday, hitting a peak of 4,022 MW.
“With these impressive wind production levels, California is well positioned to meet the 33 percent by 2020 green power goal,” said ISO President and CEO Steve Berberich. “Our control center operators are tracking a steady increase in renewable energy and we are leveraging the latest forecasting technology as well as complementary flexible resources to capture and optimize this carbon-free power supply.”
There is a total of 5,899 megawatts of wind plant capacity installed within the ISO system. Not all of the wind power was available Sunday as a result of routine generation and transmission outages, CA-ISO said. California is now the second largest producer of wind power next to Texas. The independent system operator ERCOT (Electric Reliability Council of Texas), which serves about 80 percent of the Lone Star State, reports 10,407 MW of wind generation installed and achieved a record peak of 9,481 MW on February 9.
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