PG&E Neared Record-Setting Electricity Demand During Historic Heat Wave

Northern CA (MPG)  |  Source: Pacific Gas and Electric Company
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Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) thanks customers for their conservation efforts as it came close to breaking an all-time record for electricity use on Thursday, June 22.

While PG&E expected to reach record electricity use, an afternoon and evening sea breeze in the Bay Area provided relief to some of the heat risk and electric demands.

The heat wave drove up energy demand close to levels not seen since 2006 – especially due to air conditioner use to combat the heat. PG&E was ready for the high energy usage and ensured the company had enough energy supply, including renewables like solar energy, to meet the needs of their customers. Once the sun sets and renewables are less abundant on the grid, customer conservation efforts between 4 and 7 p.m. become even more critical.

Since the heat wave first began during the afternoon of Friday, June 16, PG&E has restored approximately 379,000 customers, activated 19 local emergency centers and deployed about 5,100 field employees who supported power restoration during the heat wave. PG&E employees continue to work to restore service for the remaining customers who have experienced heat wave-related outages.

Customer demand for energy during the heat wave on Thursday, June 22 reached its highest point at 20,754 megawatts (MWs). The energy company’s all-time system peak load was on July 25, 2006, when customer demand for electricity hit 22,468 MWs. The California Independent System Operator (ISO), which manages the state’s energy grid, said peak usage across California was 42,000 MWs.

PG&E reminds customers that small behavioral changes can make a big difference in reducing demand on the power grid during periods of extreme heat while helping customers to stay comfortable.

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