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Mexico’s Power Grid on Alert as Weeks-Long Heat Dome Persists – Bloomberg

  • Record-breaking temperatures have slammed Mexico for weeks
  • National grid operator Cenace said its reserves stood below 6%
The monumental Mexican flag of San Jeronimo Lidice in the south of Mexico City, Mexico, on Thursday, Sept. 22, 2022.
The monumental Mexican flag of San Jeronimo Lidice in the south of Mexico City, Mexico, on Thursday, Sept. 22, 2022. (Cesar Rodriguez/Bloomberg)

Andrea Navarro and Brian K Sullivan, Bloomberg News

MEXICO CITY
Energiesnet.com 06 22 2023

Mexico’s power grid is on alert after a record-breaking, nationwide heat wave has strained it for weeks. 

National grid operator Cenace said its operational reserves stood below 6% on Tuesday night. Power demand broke an all-time record Tuesday, according to newspaper Reforma.

El Norte newspaper reported at least seven people had allegedly died Tuesday in the northern state of Nuevo Leon where temperatures reached 42C (108F). 

Some towns in the western state of Michoacan have seen temperatures rise to 45C. The town of Huetamo has experienced power outages for three days, leading people to sleep out on the street, Reforma newspaper reported, adding that many shops have closed and classes have been suspended. 

The current heat wave is “atypical because it has been too aggressive and prolonged, it has already lasted 20 days,” Alejandra Mendez, coordinator of Mexico’s meteorological service, said in an interview with Televisa on Tuesday. “We should be having a rainy season in June,” she said. 

Read More: Texas Power Prices Soar 80% in a Matter of Hours Amid Heat Wave

‘Stays Hot’

There is a 50% chance above normal temperatures will persist across much of Mexico through July 11, according to the US Climate Prediction Center’s global hazards outlook.

The same oppressive heat that has been bearing down on Texas is also baking Mexico and there doesn’t appear to be any real relief until early next week, said Tom Kines, a meteorologist with commercial-forecaster AccuWeather Inc. in State College, Pennsylvania. 

High pressure has set up over Texas and Mexico and “once it gets hot it stays hot,” he said. 

All through June, high temperatures in Mexico City have been at least 5.5C above normal and for the last 11 days it has reached into the 30sC, Kines said.

“The upper high that’s fostering the intense heat in Texas and Mexico is part of an unusually fragmented and contorted jet-stream pattern across North America,” said Bob Henson, a meteorologist with Yale Climate Connections. 

AMLO Says ‘Routine’

President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador on Wednesday minimized Cenace’s alert, calling the reduced reserves “routine” and said power across the country was guaranteed.

“There’s always a reserve margin, and it was reduced because of the increased demand, but we don’t have a problem,” he said during his regular morning press conference.

Lopez Obrador said the Health Ministry had only reported eight heat-related deaths for the entire year.  

Read More: Texas Power Grid Urges Consumers to Limit Electricity Use as Demand Soars

bloomberg.com 06 21 2023

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