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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

Texas A&M utility Gavin Grahovac (9) throws the ball during A&Ms game against Georgia on Friday, April 26, 2024, at Olsen Field. (CJ Smith/The Battalion)
Southern slugfest
May 23, 2024
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Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp attends the Class of 1972 50-year reunion in Kyle Field on April 20, 2022.
A&M System’s Title IX director suspended after supporting Biden's Title IX changes
Nicholas Gutteridge, Managing Editor • May 23, 2024
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A fighter jet squadron flies over during the National Anthem before Texas A&M’s game against Arkansas at Olsen Field on Saturday, May 18, 2024. (Chris Swann/The Battalion)
Bryan-College Station Regional participants announced
Ian Curtis, Sports Writer • May 27, 2024

For the second time in three seasons, No. 3 national seed Texas A&M baseball will host the Bryan-College Station Regional, where it’ll...

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Beekeeper Shelby Dittman scoops bees back into their hive during a visit on Friday, April 5, 2024. (Kyle Heise/The Battalion)
Bee-hind the scenes
Shalina Sabih, Sports Writer • May 1, 2024

The speakers turn on. Static clicks. And a voice reads “Your starting lineup for the Texas A&M Aggies is …” Spectators hear that...

Kennedy White, 19, sits for a portrait in the sweats she wore the night of her alleged assault inside the Y.M.C.A building that holds Texas A&M’s Title IX offices in College Station, Texas on Feb. 16, 2024 (Ishika Samant/The Battalion).
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April 25, 2024
Scenes from 74
Scenes from '74
April 25, 2024
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Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
The BattalionMay 4, 2024

Energy use rises

The uncharacteristically hot weather experienced throughout Texas in April has led to rolling power outages in the state and heightened energy usage at Texas A&M.
A&M is using more power than normal and currently consumes about 65 megawatts of power, Physical Plant workers say. The University purchases power from utility departments and has no control over the electricity grid.
“It’s rather high,” said a worker who wished to remain anonymous. “Normally it would be about 58 or 59. We’re making arrangements to take care of the hot weather. If the grid has problems, the University has problems, but we don’t see that in our future. We intend to take care of our students. That is our main objective.”
Texas has been on track for a hot spring for several weeks, said John Nielsen-Gammon, a meteorology professor and Texas State Climatologist.
“We’ve been under a ridge of high pressure for several weeks,” he said.
Most storms are deflected to the North, with most of Texas’ air coming from the Gulf of Mexico, Gammon said.
“When we get really hot air in the spring time, that’s when the air is coming from as far away as the Caribbean,” he said. “For the next several days we’re basically going to be downwind of the tropical Atlantic. It happens a few times a year and either means hot and muggy conditions or it can mean a lot of rain.”
Texas weather records set earlier this week that reached the 90s were not expected until late May or June, Gammon said. There is a good chance of summer weather being hotter than normal because the Atlantic sea surface temperatures have been running higher than normal, he said.
“Because of the drought in the winter, we’ll have fairly dry conditions in the summer, and when the ground is dry it’s going to be hotter,” Gammon said.
Texas will not continue to have record-breaking temperatures, but it will be hotter than normal, Gammon said.
To conserve energy in the high temperatures, the Energy Reliability Council of Texas enacted statewide rolling power outages on Monday, said Mark Williams, utility operations assistant for the College Station Utilities Electric Company. A&M did not experience the outages.
Rolling outages occur when one part of the city’s power is killed for awhile and put back on and another section is targeted, with the outage rolling through different areas of the city. The peak times that the city uses power are from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m., Williams said.
Williams said ERCOT had enough generators running, but they had several trip within a few minutes. About 1,200 megawatts of power used for the state of Texas were lost, he said.
The peak amount of power used in Bryan-College Station for last year was 183 megawatts in September, Williams said.
“We run an average of about 140 megawatts a day, but on Monday the 17th, we were running about 147,” he said.
The outages occurred for the first time in more than 15 years throughout Bryan-College Station area in 15-minute increments in residential areas from about 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. ERCOT is not expecting to order any more outages at this time, Williams said.
“They’re not perceiving any more outages, but that doesn’t mean there won’t be any more,” Williams said. “As far as the city of College Station, we’re prepared for the next bout of hot weather.”

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