ERCOT, Texas' power grid operator, is putting out a call for all Texans to conserve energy over the next few days as we head into a weekend with potentially record heat.
In a statement, the Electric Reliability Council of Texas said, "unseasonably hot weather" was driving record demand across Texas" and that they need everyone to conserve power between 3 p.m. and 8 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday after six facilities unexpectedly tripped offline Friday afternoon.
HOW TO CONSERVE POWER
- ERCOT asks all Texans to curb power usage where they can, including raising their thermostat to 78 degrees or higher between the hours of peak usage (3 p.m. to 8 p.m.).
- ERCOT also asks Texans to not use large appliances like dishwashers or washing machines and dryers during peak times.
ERCOT said six power plants dropped off the grid Friday, resulting in a loss of about 2,900 MW of generation -- that's enough electricity to power roughly 580,000 homes.
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According to ERCOT data, demand reached 65,412 MW shortly before 5 p.m. Friday. Since that time the demand has been dropping. At 5:30 p.m., ERCOT had operating reserves of roughly 3,400 MW and in a statement on Friday afternoon said, "At this time, all generation resources available are operating."
News from around the state of Texas.
NBC 5's team of weather experts has warned that higher than normal temperatures could lead to several broken temperature records in the coming days. See the latest forecast here. NBC 5's Chief Meteorologist Rick Mitchell recommends taking heat precautions this weekend including scaling back outdoor activities so as not to overexert yourself in the heat. Be sure to stay hydrated too. Also, keep your pets cool and watered.