PG&E thanked its customers today for responding to the recent Flex Alert and saving hundreds of megawatts of power during the heat wave that enveloped much of the service area earlier this month.
“I want to personally thank our customers for their efforts to conserve,” said Helen Burt, PG&E’s chief customer officer and a senior vice president. “By taking measures to save energy during some very hot afternoons, they saved money while also helping to reduce demand and ensure the reliability of the state’s electric grid.”
The heat wave started on Friday, June 26, and lasted through the Fourth of July. The state’s grid operator issued a Flex Alert, asking customers to conserve on Monday and Tuesday, July 1 and 2.
On July 1, PG&E customers participating in various demand-response conservation programs reduced loads at peak by 300 megawatts. The next day, those customers reduced loads by 500 MW.
That’s the equivalent of a large power plant, which means that customer conservation avoided the need to bring additional plants online, saving money and sparing the environment.
It was 104 degrees in Concord on June 29. Fresno hit 109 on June 30. Sacramento had a high temperature of 106 on July 1. In Bakersfield, thermometers reached 110 degrees on July 2. Redding reached 116 degrees on July 3.
PG&E uses demand response programs to reduce strain on the grid during summer months. Demand response programs are voluntary and allow enrolled customers to receive an incentive for reducing their energy use during peak demand times, like weekday afternoons. On July 1 and 2, for instance, PG&E activated six demand response programs for its business and residential customers.