Cold weather equals peak electricity demand in province

Nelson Daily Staff
By Nelson Daily Staff
November 24th, 2010

By Greg Alexis, BC Hydro

With sustained cold temperatures province-wide, there is currently a very high demand for electricity.

On Monday night, the hourly peak demand – 9,877 megawatts – for BC Hydro was recorded between 5 and 6 p.m., representing an increase of more than 1,900 megawatts over the peak a week earlier.

Efficiency with non-essential power use is more important than ever during a cold snap in order to ensure that the power supply remains reliable for essential needs.

Although BC Hydro has systems in place to meet this unusually high demand and provide reliable power, but with a few simple measures, everyone can contribute to lessening the stress on the electrical grid while still staying warm.


Here are some ways to help minimize home electricity use in cold weather:

• Timing (and timers!) are, indeed, everything. Put holiday lights and all outdoor lighting on a timer, or install a motion sensor for security lighting.

• Use energy-intensive household appliances – such as clothes washers and dryers, dishwashers and portable space heaters – outside of the peak hours of 4 to 8 p.m.

• Programmable thermostat: Install a thermostat that can be programmed to set times. Set the thermostat to automatically adjust temperatures at different times based on your family’s activities, ensuring electricity is not wasted when no one is home.


Keep the cold out and the heat in

• Keep windows covered with closed blinds and drapes for an extra layer of window insulation. Window coverings can be a quick and cost-effective way to cut heat loss and block cold drafts. Easy-to-install window film provides an additional pane to keep heat in.

Draftproof your home, one of the easiest and most inexpensive ways to reduce heat loss. Use caulking and weather stripping to seal gaps and cracks around doors, windows and outlets to prevent heat from leaking out and cold air from coming in.


Switch it up; do things differently

• Changing behavior saves energy, including: washing clothes in cold water; turning off the dishwasher’s heated-dry option; taking shorter showers and turning off lights and unplugging small appliances and electronics when they are not In use.


Choose inexpensive, energy smart lighting

• Use energy efficient compact fluorescent light bulbs – they consume 75 per cent less electricity than incandescent bulbs.

Switch to holiday LEDs that use 95 per cent less electricity than incandescent lights and last 10 times longer – and make sure your holiday lights are on a timer.


Seem like small measures? Individually, they are, but multiply each one by 1.8 million.


This post was syndicated from https://thenelsondaily.com
Categories: General


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