The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) recently filed a new electricity supply outlook with the Public Utility Commission of Texas, which noted that supply could be more favorable than previous estimates.
ERCOT, which controls about 75 percent of Texas' electric grid, said it will likely be able to derive about 77,000 to 78,000 megawatts of capacity in 2013 and 2014 – markedly better than the last estimate given in May. This capacity estimate includes generation plants that will come back online and new plants that are expected to be built.
The total number of new generation additions will be sufficient to increase ERCOT's reserve margin, or the anticipated electricity supply compared with expected demand, above the original 13.75 percent in 2014.
"It should be noted that permitting, availability of water contracts, and other challenges may negatively impact certain resources' ability to come online in a given year. In addition, ERCOT notes that it did not conduct a full recalculation of the May 2012 CDR in response to this request, but rather conducted only the analysis described above," ERCOT included in the filing.
How the adjusted reading will affect Texas electricity rates is still up in the air, but considering the state's competitive energy market has buoyed prices for the last 10 years, it likely will not have too drastic an effect.