News Highlights from the Electric Power Industry.
Weather outlook: La Nina firmly in place
Sea-surface temperatures are cooler than average from the west-central Pacific to the eastern Pacific. This indicates that the much-anticipated La Nina has firmly developed in the Equatorial Pacific Ocean.
The latest long-range climate models suggest that this La Nina phase will persist through the upcoming winter and possibly into next spring. With that being said, slightly above normal temperatures are forecast across portions of the Intermountain West, Desert Southwest, and southern Rockies during the month of December. >> Read more
NERC expands IT-focused cybersecurity program as hackers actively target grid operations tech
Hackers are increasingly targeting operational technology that helps run the electric grid. In response, security officials are adjusting existing cybersecurity programs to counter the threat.
The two pilots will attempt to identify threats to utilities’ industrial control systems by capturing “raw and/or refined operational technology data” and comparing it with IT data that utilities send to CRISP. >> Read more
Innovation is the beating heart of the energy industry: from Ben Franklin’s mythical kite flight to Thomas Edison’s light bulb to reliable and safe power distribution.
Through the years, technology has helped drive innovation in power distribution, operational efficiency and customer service. Today, aging power line carrier (PLC) systems have given way to data-rich Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) and smart utility networks. >> Read more
Union leaders lauded the news, saying it is well-timed to provide good construction jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic and related unemployment.
“Thousands of our friends and neighbors across Minnesota look forward to using their construction skills to protect our environment and communities by replacing an existing deteriorating pipeline,” Joel Smith, state president of Laborers’ International Union of North America, told the Star Tribune. >> Read more
Wet-limestone scrubber enhancement chemistry improves heat rate for coal-fired plants
In early 2019, Power Engineering published a report on chemistry that can significantly enhance limestone reactivity and sulfur dioxide (SO2) removal in wet flue gas desulfurization (WFGD) systems.  The article outlined a full-scale application at a coal-fired plant in the eastern U.S. where the chemistry improved scrubbing efficiency. >> Read more