Report on Cold Weather Outages
Causes and Recommendations
The southwest region of the United States experienced unusually cold and windy weather during the first week of February 2011. Electric entities located within the Texas Reliability Entity, Inc. (TRE), the Western Electricity Coordinating Council (WECC), and the Southwest Power Pool (SPP) were affected by the extreme weather, as were gas entities in Texas, New Mexico and Arizona. This report aims to explain the causes of the electric outages and natural gas curtailments that occurred during the February 2011 event. It is divided into several sections, beginning with an overview of the electric and natural gas industries that provides background for the event, discusses the event itself and prior cold weather events in the region, and ends with a summary of key findings and recommendations.