PG&E getting ready for solar eclipse which will cause solar power production to drop

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PG&E's Southern Power Distribution Control Center in Fresno is bracing for the solar eclipse. (KFSN)

PG&E's Southern Power Distribution Control Center in Fresno is bracing for the solar eclipse. As the moon covers the sun the eclipse will cause solar energy produced by solar farms and housing panels to significantly drop in the Central Valley.

The Distribution Control Center Manager Steve Roland said, "So what we expect to see on the eclipse is we're going to see, I believe, roughly a 65-percent curtailment of the solar."

The center serves customers from Stockton to Bakersfield-- the sierra to the coast. Come Monday, Roland said workers will keep a close eye on the power grid from their pods.

"So if we have an alarm at a substation due to a voltage problem, or a circuit-based problem or if it was related to the eclipse we're going to get an indication of whatever that is and we respond accordingly."

Once the solar energy production starts to drop PG&E will bring other power plants on-line, like the Helms Hydro Facility in the Sierra Nevada, to make up for the shortfall.

Denny Boyles with PG&E said, "I would say a lot of forms of clean generation-- Helms, other hydro facilities, if needed we have natural gas powered plants."

Solar accounts for about 30-percent of the state's energy.

Roland said customers should not expect any power interruptions because of the solar eclipse. PG&E has been preparing for the event for a year.

Related Topics:
societysolar eclipsefresnoPG&Esolar energy
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