ERCOT Issues Conservation Alert - NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth

ERCOT Issues Conservation Alert

ERCOT says July record for peak electricity set Thursday



    ERCOT Issues Conservation Alert
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    ERCOT said Thursday set a new record for the highest electricity demand in July.

    The operator of the Texas electric power distribution grid asked Texans to reduce their pull on the grid between the hours of 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. Thursday.

    The Yellow Conservation Alert was issued at about noon Thursday. The Electric Reliability Council of Texas said high temperatures across the state were resulting in a near-record demand for power.

    “We are expecting the statewide power supplies to be very tight over peak today, primarily due to the forecast for continued temperature extremes which causes higher than normal electricity use, and because of unexpected unit outages,” said Kent Saathoff, vice president of grid operations and system planning.

    ERCOT said a new record for peak electricity demand in July was set Thursday, with the 64,226 megawatts beating the previous day's record of 23 megawatts.

    The all-time record -- 65,776 megawatts -- was set Aug. 23, 2010.

    ERCOT said if the demand is too great on the grid they may be forced to instruct utility companies to conduct temporary power outages that can last from 15 to 45 minutes.

    Dallas-Fort Worth faced its 13th straight day of temperatures in the triple-digits.

    ERCOT reminds customers that they can curb usage by turning off unnecessary lights and appliances and by delaying doing laundry or running the dishwasher during the peak usage time. They also ask that people set their thermostats to 78 degrees or higher and use fans to cool themselves and the air. Additionally, close drapes and blinds to block the sun.

    See the ERCOT load zones report here.