Updated Sept. 9, 12:30 p.m.
After narrowly avoiding blackouts on Tuesday, California ISO, the state’s energy grid operator, has issued another statewide Flex Alert asking residents to conserve power on Friday between 4 and 9 p.m.
Friday marks the 10th day in a row Cal ISO has issued statewide Flex Alerts, responding to the extended heat wave that hit much of the west coast last week. It’s also the fifth day in a row the agency has warned of potential blackouts due to high energy demand.
Cal ISO has also issued an Emergency Energy Alert 1 for the same time period on Friday, which signifies the agency forecasts all available power is being used across the grid.
Cal ISO said Friday that energy demand is expected to soar as temperatures are forecast to remain high through the week. On Tuesday night, demand hit 52,061 megawatts, which broke the previous record set in 2006.
Officials recommend doing the following to conserve energy between 4 p.m. and 9 p.m.:
- Setting air conditioning thermostats at 78 degrees
- Turning off unnecessary lights
- Closing blinds and drapes
- Deferring using major appliances
- Unplugging unused electrical devices
- Limiting opening refrigerator doors
The agency serving much of the Sacramento area, Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD), is not on the same grid system as Cal ISO. However, the heat wave is affecting both SMUD and Cal ISO’s energy supplies, and SMUD asked its residents to participate in the Flex Alerts Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday in order to avoid rolling blackouts in their service area.
Other agencies are stepping in to help save energy across the area. Sacramento Regional Transit announced on Wednesday that it only ran single-car trains along light rail lines to reduce power consumption. Extreme heat is also impacting the transit agency’s light rail system.
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