NERC: Power grid problems, intense heat could lead to widespread blackouts in North America this summer
06/01/2022 // Mary Villareal // Views

The North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) is warning citizens that there could be widespread summer blackouts in parts of North America this summer due to shuttered power plants, supply chain problems and the intense heat.

The nonprofit organization, which monitors the nation's electric grids and which promotes grid stability and security, cautioned that power supplies in a large part of the United States and Canada, from the Great Lakes to the Midwest, will be overstretched due to growing demands.

Much of the Midwest is at a high risk of energy emergencies, and electric grids that bring power to the West and through Texas could also see serious problems.

"It's a pretty sobering report, and it's clear the risks are spreading," said John Moura, the director of NERC.

NERC also said power disruptions would be notably higher because of older plants shutting down or other facilities struggling to find enough fuel. Moreover, the report noted that power grids could be the target of cyber attacks in the coming months.

"The electricity and other critical infrastructure sectors face cyber security threats from Russia and other potential actors amid heightened geopolitical tensions in addition to ongoing cyber risks," NERC said. It also indicated that Russian attackers may be planning or attempting malicious cyber activity to gain access and disrupt the electric grid in North America as retaliation for its support to Ukraine.

The retirement of fossil fuel plants has also been a critical issue throughout the energy landscape while gas and coal entities are at maximum capacity. Drought conditions in different areas of North America have also limited production from hydroelectric dams. Wildfires could also darken the skies with smoke and threaten solar panels, prompting households to depend on the power grid again, adding more strain to the system.


NERC further revealed that a growing number of solar developers are also indicating that they may not be able to meet expected commission data, including projects that are supposed to be scheduled for completion this summer.

However, the energy transition also poses its own problems, with dirtier plants going offline faster than renewables can come online, so gas and coal plants have to run harder. Supply chain issues are also hampering some solar projects and transmission lines while coal plants that are already on the grid are having problems getting enough fuel to run.

Energy shortfalls could trigger energy emergencies

From Manitoba, Canada, to Louisiana, U.S.A., study authors warn that the capacity shortfall could trigger energy emergencies at the height of sizzling summer conditions.

California has already warned its citizens of the risk of blackouts for the next three summers as it transitions to green energy, and it's weighing on keeping a nuclear power plant open to offset the potential loss of hydropower. (Related: Millions of Americans will suffer amid mass power outages this winter, thanks to a burgeoning energy crisis, insider warns.)

Despite being one of the largest energy producers, Texas could also endure tremendous issues over the next several months as a combination of extreme peak demand, low wind and high outage rates from thermal generators, which could require system operators to use emergency procedures up to and including temporary manual load shedding.

Texas residents are also being asked to conserve power in the heat to avoid summertime blackouts, while experts recommend that households keep their thermostats at 78 degrees, and wait until 8 p.m. to run large appliances. The Electric Reliability Council of Texas also said that the state maintains enough power to satisfy the all-time high demand of the summer. (Related: Energy expert: Texas power outage could have been prevented with significant investment.)

North America should be able to get a glimpse of what Summer 2022 would look like by checking what is happening in Asia today. The continent is going through a heatwave that has already led to daily blackouts in India, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.

These conditions have put nearly one billion people at risk, with more possibly following the same fate as China and Japan could also face the same tight power supplies in the coming months.

Industry officials in Beijing said the energy situation would be challenging to navigate, although the government has already pledged that the country will keep the lights on. Tokyo has taken a proactive approach so far as the city urged its residents to conserve energy and change their habits in the next few weeks.

For more updates, visit

Watch the video below for more information about the summer blackouts that will be happening all over America.

This video is from the Kim Osbøl - Copenhagen Denmark channel on

More related stories:

Leading investment firm co-founder warns global energy shortage is going to become so profound it will cause widespread social unrest.

Power grid operators warn of looming energy shortages thanks to Biden's "clean energy" policies.

Leading investment firm co-founder warns global energy shortage is going to become so profound it will cause widespread social unrest.

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