California Braces for More Rolling Blackouts Amid Heat Wave

Electrical grid transmission towers are seen in Pasadena, Calif., Saturday, Aug. 15, 2020. The operator of the state's power grid declared an emergency Friday evening, Aug. 14, and ordered utilities to shed their power loads.

Electrical grid transmission towers are seen in Pasadena, Calif., Saturday, Aug. 15, 2020. The operator of the state's power grid declared an emergency Friday evening, Aug. 14, and ordered utilities to shed their power loads. AP Photo/John Antczak

 

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STATE AND LOCAL NEWS ROUNDUP | Arrest controversy in Pittsburgh ... Boston signs local contract for protective gear ... Cuomo green-lights bowling alley re-openings ... Nonprofit seeks to improve drinking water access in West Virginia.

BLACKOUTS | California officials told residents to expect more rolling blackouts on Monday and Tuesday that could affect millions of utility customers, as the state bakes in a heat wave. Blackouts began in California on Friday and Saturday as power demand exceeded supply. “We failed to predict and plan for these shortages, and that’s just unacceptable,” Gov. Gavin Newsom said. Steve Berberich, CEO of the California Independent System Operator, said grid operators had warned of a situation like this repeatedly and that it could have been avoided. “We have told regulators over and over and over again that imports were drying up and that more imports should have been contracted for. That was rebuffed," Berberich said. The heat has worsened wildfire conditions in California and other states. Over the weekend, forecasters issued a fire-related tornado warning for a fire burning in Northern California. In Death Valley, California temperatures peaked at 130 degrees on Sunday, which if verified could be one of the highest temperature readings ever recorded on Earth. [Los Angeles Times, San Francisco Chronicle]

PLAINCLOTHES ARREST | Demonstrators gathered outside Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto's home on Sunday to protest an arrest the city’s police force made on Saturday. The plainclothes officers in an unmarked car arrested 25-year-old Matthew Cartier during a Black Lives Matter protest. “They saw officers getting somebody and throwing them into a van, and they ask ‘Why?' and they’re right to ask 'Why?’,” Peduto said. [WTAE]

PROTECTIVE GEAR | Boston Mayor Marty Walsh announced that he signed a contract with the last remaining garment manufacturer in the city to produce up to 150,000 medical gowns for first responders and front-line workers. “During these challenging times, I am pleased that the City of Boston has been able to support a long-time, locally owned business, while producing needed, high-quality PPE to support Boston’s first responders,” Walsh said. [MassLive]

BOWLING ALLEYS | New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced on Friday that bowling alleys in the state will be allowed to reopen at half capacity. Face masks are required, and alleys must keep every other lane closed, as well as offering food by waited service only. [Newsday]

DRINKING WATER | A California-based nonprofit organization is launching a project to help improve access to clean drinking water in southern West Virginia, a part of the state where water systems have been plagued by problems for years. The group, DigDeep, has previously worked to expand water and sewer access in the Navajo Nation. [Charleston Gazette-Mail]

Emma Coleman is the assistant editor at Route Fifty and Bill Lucia is a senior reporter.

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