ERCOT again pleas for energy conservation as temperatures soar
As a record-breaking summer continues to scorch Texas, the state's grid regulator is asking Texans to turn down their energy use today from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m.
The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) expects demand for power to surge as air conditioners compete with the unrelenting heat. High energy use coupled with lower-than expected wind and solar generation this afternoon could leave the grid struggling to keep up with demand, ERCOT said.
An ERCOT dashboard forecasts the demand for electricity this afternoon and evening to skirt close to the state's capacity to generate power.
This summer's requests for voluntary conservation are stacking up. This is the fifth one this month.
On Thursday, ERCOT warned of possible emergency operations — an escalating series of drastic measures that culminates in rolling blackouts.
But Texas was spared because people reduced power; Houston got rain; and more wind helped generate additional electricity.
Austin Energy says you can conserve energy by:
- raising the thermostat by a few degrees
- using fans to stay cool
- avoiding use of large appliances
- turning off lights you don't need
- setting pool pumps to run early in the morning or overnight
The National Weather Service (NWS) has issued an excessive heat warningfor parts of the Austin-area — cautioning of dangerously hot temperatures around 105 or higher. That's the forecast high today at Camp Mabry. The normal high is 98.3.
Austin has recorded 64 days of triple digit heat this year, according to NWS records. The city is on track to have its hottest summer ever.