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Plenty of power in West Texas this summer

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Amarillo, TX - Area residents are concerned about our power supply this summer as much of Texas is expected to run dangerously low and are vulnerable to rolling blackouts.

We're told this is not something we are dealing with locally.

Xcel Energy says their customers and stakeholders don't need to worry because parts of West Texas and New Mexico are in a separate electrical grid.

This makes our area an exception to the problem.

Our electrical grid is under a regulated market, as the rest of the state is under a deregulated market.

We have different rules and guidelines to follow which are overseen by state officials.

"Year after year we forecast and are required to meet certain margins up and above the demand of energy we see in our area. We plan and make prudent investments based on those needs and so far we've kept up with that just fine. That's why our customers really don't have anything to be worried about this summer," says Troy Foos, Xcel Energy. 

This also shields consumers from rate spikes.

Ercot is based on supply and demand, which is why they are considering tripling their wholesale power prices during peak periods.

The forecast for our area this summer is looking good.

"We expect to have plenty of energy for our customers this summer. Unforeseen events happen but we plan for those, we have plenty of linemen and other crews on hand to respond to those situations. Typically in this region it's more of a storm damage type situation," says Troy Foos, Xcel Energy. 

Customers are still encouraged to save energy to ensure we don't ever face an extreme outage problem in the future.

"A few good energy saving tips are to raise your thermostat, especially during the hot days to 78 degrees. That could save you up to twenty-five dollars a month. Of course ceiling fans circulate air across the house and cool it down," says Troy Foos, Xcel Energy.

You can also install compact fluorescent bulbs, change air conditioning filters and put full loads in the washer and dryer.

As the rest of the state deals with this power problem, we are planning for the future.

"Over the next five years we plan to invest over two-billion dollars in infrastructure that will greatly increase safe and reliable energy at a reasonable cost for our customers," says Troy Foos, Xcel Energy.

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