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A statewide Flex Alert has been issued for Thursday due to increased energy demand

Posted at 5:39 PM, Sep 30, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-01 18:13:33-04

BAKERSFIELD, Cali. — According to California Independent System Operator (CAISO), a Flex Alert has been issued for Thursday starting at 3 p.m. A Flex Alert calls for PG&E customers to conserve their energy use during peak hours to prevent an energy shortage.

CAISO says wildfires are threatening transmission lines across the state, and in fact, generators that were taken offline several weeks ago due to wildfires have not returned to service.

The CAISO website FlexAlert.org shows that the state will reach 82% of its energy capacity:

According to PG&E, here are five ways customers can cut their power use:

  1. Set your thermostat at 78 degrees or higher, health permitting: Every degree you lower the thermostat means your air conditioner must work even harder to keep your home cool.
  2. When it’s cooler outside, bring the cool air in: If the outside air is cool in the night or early morning, open windows and doors and use fans to cool your home.
  3. Close your shades: Sunlight passing through windows heats your home and makes your air conditioner work harder. Block this heat by keeping blinds or drapes closed on the sunny side of your home.
  4. Cool down with a fan: Fans keep air circulating, allowing you to raise the thermostat a few degrees and stay just as comfortable while reducing your air-conditioning costs.
  5. Clear the area around your AC: Your air conditioning unit will operate better if it has plenty of room to breathe. The air conditioner's outdoor unit, the condenser, needs to be able to circulate air without any interruption or obstruction.
PG&E provides tips for conserving energy

PG&E went on to say that: "Customers can actively help by shifting energy use to morning and nighttime hours. Conservation can lower demand and reduce the duration of possible power interruptions. In August, when California experienced its first rotating outages in two decades, conservation limited the effects to two nights rather than three or four. And, similarly, conservation over the very hot Labor Day weekend prevented the need for rotating outages."

The company funds cooling centers throughout its service area to help customers escape the heat and cool off.

To find a center near you click here or call (877) 474-3266.

Visit their website for more tips on how to save energy.