Rolling Blackouts: What Oaklanders Need to Know, and What to Expect

August 2020

power-rolling blackouts

The Oaklandside

Recent power shutoffs mandated by the California Independent System Operator (CAISO) took the Bay Area by surprise. The Oaklandside taps into Energy Institute experts, Lucas Davis and Andrew Campbell to learn more about these efforts to help stabilize the power grid.

“Andy Campbell, executive director of U.C. Berkeley’s Haas Energy Institute, said…’The reason they black out some customers is so they can then keep power going to all the others. If supply and demand is out of whack, the whole system can collapse, and that could be very difficult to recover from.'”

“Lucas Davis, professor at UC Berkeley Haas School of Business, watched wholesale electricity prices skyrocket on Friday. ‘When the wholesale price goes way up, the price should go up for people…Then you wouldn’t need to have as many natural gas plants sitting around. We could pass a price on to customers and allow them to respond and use less energy.'”

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Photo: Sarah Belle Lin,