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Electric companies ask consumers to conserve electricity

Icy temperatures have caused a spike in electricity usage.
Cold weather pushes electricity use higher

Cold weather pushes electricity use higher

WINCHESTER, Ky. (Jan. 7, 2014) – East Kentucky Power Cooperative and PJM Interconnection are requesting the public to conserve electricity on Tuesday. With some of the coldest temperatures on record hitting the region, Louisville Gas and Electric Co. and Kentucky Utilities Co. also are encouraging customers to use energy wisely and voluntarily conserve energy.

Icy temperatures have caused a spike in electricity usage.
Icy temperatures have caused a spike in electricity usage.

EKPC’s request is being made throughout the region served by PJM, the electricity grid operator for a 13-state area. EKPC, which provides electric power and transmission service to 16 electric cooperatives that serve all or portions of 87 Kentucky counties, is a member of PJM.

Demand for electricity within PJM’s region is expected to increase because of the extremely cold weather. PJM asks consumers to conserve electricity, if health permits – especially from 6 to 9 a.m. and from 3 to 7 p.m. Electricity customers can take simple electricity conservation steps:

♦ Set thermostats lower than usual, if health permits.

♦ Postpone using major electric appliances such as stoves, dishwashers and clothes dryers until mid-day or after 9 p.m., when the demand for electricity decreases.

♦ Turn off electric lights and appliances that you do not need or are not using.

Conserving electricity on Tuesday will help ensure adequate power supplies. PJM continues to carefully monitor the power supply conditions. It will do everything possible to keep power flowing in the region. If necessary, PJM will take additional steps, such as reducing voltage.

PJM is communicating about the situation with state government officials and regional reliability authorities throughout the region. PJM’s region includes all or parts of Delaware, Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia and the District of Columbia. PJM is coordinating efforts among generators, power suppliers and local utilities.

Although LG&E and KU are successfully meeting the increased energy demand, the utilities are encouraging customers to take simple energy efficiency steps to help lower energy consumption during this cold snap.

♦ Adjust your thermostat to lowest comfortable setting.  If you’re going to be gone for more than four hours turn the thermostat down several degrees as well.

♦ Reduce reliance on other heating sources.

♦ Wear extra layers such as a sweatshirt or sweater.

♦ Add extra blankets to the bed.

♦ Close the fireplace damper and doors when not in use unless you have a gas fireplace.

♦ Use draft stoppers for windows and doors.

♦ Turn off all unnecessary lights and appliances.

♦ Run your dishwashers, dryers and washing machines only when full.

♦ Open curtains, drapes and/or blinds in the daytime to let the sun’s heat in your home and close them at night to retain the heat.

♦ Furniture or drapes should not block air registers.

♦ Use a microwave oven or a slow cooker or prepare cold meals. Microwaves use less than half the power of a conventional oven and cook food in about one-fourth the time.