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California is extending its alert for energy conservation during peak demand hours as a heatwave is sweeping through the West, and the California Independent System Operator (ISO) warns that the possibility of rotating outages on Monday afternoon and evening has never been greater this year.
California and the other western U.S. states are experiencing an extreme heat event, which is now expected to last longer through this week and peak higher.
The National Weather Service San Francisco Bay Area said on Sunday that dangerous heat is ahead as triple-digit heat would impact interior portions of the Bay Area and Central Coast through at least midweek.
Faced with extreme heat, energy demand approaching record levels, and worsening challenges to the grid, CAISO reiterated on Sunday its call for consumers to lower electricity use in the afternoons and evenings to avoid outages.
“Starting tomorrow, this multi-day event is going to get much more intense,” ISO President and CEO Elliot Mainzer said on Sunday. “We are facing a load forecast of 48,817 megawatts and energy deficits between 2,000 and 4,000 megawatts for Monday, resulting in the highest likelihood of rotating outages we have seen so far this summer,” Mainzer added.
“Because of the increasingly extreme conditions, we will need significant additional consumer demand reductions during the hours of 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Monday and access to all the emergency tools that the state and utilities have established for an extreme event like this one.”.
According to ISO, additional calls for reducing energy consumption are expected as California endures record-breaking temperatures at least through Friday in a historic heatwave for both its temperatures and its duration.
At the start of the heatwave last week, Californian electricity consumers were already urged not to charge their electric vehicles during peak demand hours to help ease the strain on the state’s electricity grid.
“The top three conservation actions are to set thermostats to 78 degrees or higher, avoid using large appliances and charging electric vehicles, and turn off unnecessary lights,” the American Public Power Association, which represents public utilities, said last week.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com
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Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews.