California grid operator calls on residents to conserve electricity amid heat wave

California grid operator calls on residents to conserve electricity amid heat wave
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The California Independent System Operator (CAISO) is asking residents to conserve electricity amid a heat wave that is affecting much of the Western U.S. 

“The California Independent System Operator (ISO), with extreme heat forecast for much of California and the Southwest, has issued a statewide Flex Alert to encourage electricity conservation tomorrow from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. to reduce stress on the grid and avoid power outages,” CAISO announced Wednesday.

Between those times, residents the operator has asked residents to turn their thermostats to 78 degrees, turn off unnecessary lights, not to use major appliances, unplug unused appliances and use fans to cool off. 

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CAISO also encouraged residents to prepare for this conservation effort by charging electronic appliances, pre-cooling their homes and using major appliances. 

Should an insufficient number of residents fail to conserve energy, CAISO said that the strain on the power grid would be too great. The operator would tell utility companies to rotate power outages.

California Gov. Gavin NewsomGavin NewsomNewsom signs privacy laws for abortion providers and patients Overnight Energy & Environment — Presented by the League of Conservation Voters — Senate Finance chair backs budget action on fossil fuel subsidies Water usage in Southern California increased, despite Newsom's call to cut back: data MORE (D) issued an emergency proclamation Tuesday to free up more energy capacity to help the grid. 

The proclamation suspends certain permitting requirements, allowing the use of back-up power generation and freeing up additional energy capacity to help alleviate the heat-induced demands on the state’s energy grid,” the press release states.

The National Weather Service said the weather experienced in the West will be a “dangerous” and “record-breaking” heat wave. The harsh weather has California, Nevada, Arizona and Utah under heat advisories.