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What Is Normal?

The Feds Just Threw a Lifeline to California During Energy Crisis

Genaro Molina/Los Angeles Times via AP

The Department of Energy (DOE) announced on Sunday that Sec. Dan Brouillette, in response to an urgent request from the state of California, issued a Section 202 (c) emergency order to help prevent California's already-faltering power grid from being completely overwhelmed. 

"I hereby determine that an emergency exists in California due to a shortage of electric energy, a shortage of facilities for the generation of electric energy, and other causes, and that issuance of this Order will meet the emergency and serve the public interest," reads a letter from the Assistant Secretary for Electricity Bruce Walker. 

The DOE order authorizes the emergency use of stationary and portable generators, as well as auxiliary engines on board ocean-going vessels berthed in California ports. The order suspends any laws, regulations or permits limiting the use of these power-generating machines. The order is set to expire just before midnight on September 13. 

"The Secretary concurs with the California Independent System Operator Corporation (CAISO) that a grid reliability emergency exists which demands immediate federal intervention," said DOE spokeswoman Shaylyn Hines in a statement.

Despite the rolling blackouts, California policymakers are too busy these days lowering penalties for adults who have sex with minors to deal with the faltering power grid. California's blackouts are entirely the fault of Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom and his ilk of quixotic environmentalists.  

California decided to mandate the use of renewable energy despite the lack of technology to make such a mandate reliable to California residents. Usually, other western states, who haven't pursued reckless green policies, are available to bail out California by sending the state some of their power. But with the high temperatures, neighboring states have less power on hand these days. Combine blackouts with wildfires and many Californians are unable to receive advance warnings of approaching flames or operate electric water pumps that could save residents from losing their homes. 

So California is now forced to turn to the feds. 

"While the Secretary has offered this emergency assistance to California in this time of crisis, he also encourages state policymakers to evaluate why the grid is not able to handle extreme stress, which could be alleviated with the support of greater baseload power generation and natural gas supply," said Hines. 

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