WACO, Texas – The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) is asking everyone in Texas to conserve their electricity use from now until Tuesday, Feb. 16th.
Currently, more than 30,000 people in Waco and more than a million in Texas are without power.
ERCOT says the state is currently experiencing record-breaking electric demand due to the extreme cold temperatures and higher-than-normal generation outages due to frozen wind turbines and limited natural gas supplies available to generating units.
“When you have cold weather everybody is at home, everybody is bumping up the thermostat and cooking and watching TV, so we’re really needing everybody to pull together so that you don’t have the grid over stressed,” says Oncor spokesperson Grant Cruise.
Here are some ideas from ERCOT to help conserve electricity:
- Turn down thermostats to 68-degrees.
- Close shades and blinds to reduce the amount of heat lost through windows.
- Turn off and unplug non-essential lights and appliances.
- Avoid using large appliances (i.e., ovens, washing machines, etc.).
- Businesses should minimize the use of electric lighting and electricity-consuming equipment as much as possible.
- Large consumers of electricity should consider shutting down or reducing non-essential production processes.
Grant Cruise from Oncor also recommends some ideas on how to easily conserve energy.
“Make sure you open up your blinds and your curtains during the day letting in that natural heat from the sun, it will go a long way, and then close them up once the sun goes down to keep the heat from escaping from the windows,” says Cruise.
“Don’t do laundry or dishes during the day if you don’t have to, making a few small changes can really go a long way,” says Cruise.
Oncor also says, be sure to unplug appliances if you’re not using them.
“We refer to those as energy vampires because people kind of assume just because I’m not using one TV in the house it’s not consuming electricity but it is,” says Cruise.