ERCOT requests energy conservation during afternoons

ERCOT provided an update Tuesday on its call for energy conservation, focusing on the peak hours of 3-7 p.m.

“Texans responded strongly by reducing electric demand during the late afternoon,” ERCOT said in a news release. “ERCOT continues to encourage Texans to conserve power each afternoon during the peak hours of 3 to 7 p.m. through this Friday.”

Texas’ power grid operator had put out a Conservation Alert on Monday due to high demand and some outages. Tuesday, it said that the grid is “operating exactly as it was designed and intended” and consideration combined with changes implemented “following the winter storm prevented the possibility of rotating outages (Monday) and ensured that no Texans lost power.”

ERCOT set a new June record for electricity demand on Monday. ERCOT says it has been leveraging every resource at its disposal, including activating all available generating units to help serve customer demand before calling for conservation. Approximately 1,200 MW of power was regained overnight Monday when some repairs were completed. One MW typically powers around 200 homes on a summer day.

“We know it can be tough to change family routines, but yesterday is proof that simple conservation measures really do make a difference,” said ERCOT Interim President and CEO Brad Jones. “Conservation notices are commonly-used tools used by utilities and system operators across the country to ensure the reliability of the electric grid. If possible, Texans should apply that same effort during peak hours from 3 to 7 p.m. this week until conditions return to normal.”

ERCOT is asking residents to take the following actions between 3-7 p.m. through Friday to reduce demand:

  • Set your thermostat to 78 degrees or higher – every degree of cooling increases your energy use by 6-8%
  • Turn off lights and pool pumps and avoid using large appliances like ovens, washing machines and dryers
  • If you don’t need something, turn it off and unplug it if possible.

Visit the Power to Save website or your electric provider for more ways to conserve.

Mark Smith
Mark Smith is the Digital Editor of The Cross Timbers Gazette.

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