By Denis Martyn, NewsRadio 1080 KRLD
sunshine 51601521 ERCOT Concerned About Electric Usage As Schools Begin Year

The hot noonday sun shines through power lines. (credit: Gerard Burkhart/AFP/Getty Images)

NORTH TEXAS (CBSDFW.COM) – The Electric Reliability Council of Texas is a little worried about what’s going to happen on the first day of school across the state.

The council says Monday’s firing up of school buildings that have laid idle over the summer could put a strain on the state’s electric grid.

ERCOT Chief Operating Officer Michael Cleary told the Public Utility Commission Friday that he is concerned that the grid will not be able to handle all the schools that will be coming on line Monday morning.

Cleary says schools normally add 1,000 to 1,500 megawatts of demand statewide. He says that’s normally a drop in the bucket, but this has not been a normal summer.  He told the PUC that jump would have been enough to cause rolling blackouts during the record power demands of July and earlier this month.

Temperatures in North Texas are expected to tie a record of 105 degrees Monday.

ERCOT has had some trouble dealing with the demand for electricity during this summer, but hasn’t yet had to institute any rolling blackouts despite being close.