The California Independent System Operator has issued a statewide Flex Alert calling for voluntary electricity conservation this weekend.
The conservation is requested from 3 to 9 p.m., starting today through Monday. Temperatures this weekend are forecast 10 to 20 degrees above normal and the power grid operator is predicting an increase in electricity demand, primarily from air conditioning use, according to officials.
Overnight temperatures are also expected to be at least 10 degrees higher than normal, which prevents infrastructure from cooling down. The high heat can limit the ISO’s ability to import energy to serve demand, officials said.
Energy conservation can help lower demand and avoid further actions, including power outages, and lessen the duration of potential power interruptions.
“The ISO recognizes that reducing energy use during the hot time of the day is a hardship, especially for those working from home or for families with children schooling at home. However, if a large enough number of consumers conserve even in small ways, they can help grid operators avoid more serious system emergencies,” officials said.
Consumers are asked to: set air conditioning thermostats to 78 degrees, if health permits; defer use of major appliances; turn off unnecessary lights; unplug unused electrical devices; close blinds and drapes; use fans when possible; and limit the time the refrigerator door is open.
— Mitchell White