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September 01, 2020 10:18am
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State’s Grid Operator Asks Electric Customers Across California to Conserve Power Today as Heat Wave Increases Energy Demand Across the West

State’s Flex Alert Requests Voluntary Conservation from 6 to 9 p.m. Today

We All Can Help as a Few Simple Steps Can Reduce the Stress on the Grid

With continuing triple-digit heat forecast for today (Friday, June 18), the state’s grid operator has called for afternoon and evening energy conservation throughout California as one way to help the supply of power stay ahead of demand.

The California Independent System Operator (CAISO) has issued the Flex Alert for today from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. The grid operator forecasts an increase in electricity demand, primarily from air conditioning use, due to the heat wave.

This statewide Flex Alert asks everyone to work together and conserve to protect California’s grid. The National Weather Service has issued excessive heat warnings for many regions within PG&E’s service area.

Here are ways for customers to reduce energy use during the day:

  • Pre-cool your home or workspace by lowering your thermostat. Turn it off if you will be away from home.
  • Use a fan instead of air conditioning when possible.
  • Use major appliances, like your dishwasher or washer and dryer, early in the morning.
  • Charge your electronic devices before the late afternoon.
  • Set your pool pump to run overnight instead of during the day.
  • Keep your refrigerator full (with bottles of water if nothing else) and unplug your second refrigerator if you have one.

And, during the critical hours of 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., customers are asked to:

  • Adjust your thermostat to 78 degrees or higher, after cooling your home to below-normal levels in the morning.
  • Don’t charge electric vehicles during this critical period.
  • Draw drapes and turn off unnecessary lighting.
  • Limit the opening of refrigerators, a major user of electricity in most homes. The average refrigerator is opened 33 times a day.
  • Keep refrigerator full (with bottles of water if nothing else) and unplug your second refrigerator if you have one.
  • Avoid using major appliances, such as your oven. Instead, cook on the stove, use a microwave or grill outside.

PG&E’s Demand Response programs offer incentives for business owners and residential customers who curtail their energy use during times of peak demand. PG&E has several of these programs. About 261,000 PG&E customers are enrolled in one of these Demand Response programs. PG&E’s website includes detailed information on these programs, which allow residential customers and business customers to save energy and money.

PG&E’s in-house meteorologists say the heat wave will linger across California’s interior today and Saturday, with decreasing temperatures Sunday into next week. Temperatures are still expected to top out at around 105 to 112 degrees across the Central Valley, with 90s for intermediate and inland Bay Area valleys.

PG&E also urges customers to stay safe during this heat wave. 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 1-877-474-3266.

PG&E does not project a need for a Public Safety Power Shutoff due to this weather, but conditions will be continuously monitored.

About PG&E

Pacific Gas and Electric Company, a subsidiary of PG&E Corporation (NYSE:PCG), is a combined natural gas and electric utility serving more than 16 million people across 70,000 square miles in Northern and Central California. For more information, visit and




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