Call for energy conservation continues as temperatures hit 100 degrees

ERCOT made emergency appeal for cutbacks twice this week

By Katrina Webber - Crime Fighters Reporter, Tim Stewart - Photojournalist

SAN ANTONIO - In the midst of blazing hot temperatures and extremely high electricity usage, CPS Energy is echoing a call for energy conservation issued by the agency that oversees the state’s electric grid.

The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), in an unusual move, put out an emergency appeal twice this week for people across the state to cut back on usage.

CPS Energy is reinforcing that message, trying to get local people to act before it’s too late.

“Inevitably, if it gets to that point, there will have to be some rolling blackouts,” said John Moreno, a spokesman for CPS Energy, talking about the most extreme measure that would be taken if record-level usage continues. “It's not just San Antonio that would be affected. It's everyone in the state of Texas that's affected.”

Moreno said since the first ERCOT warning earlier this week, San Antonians have been responding, but the efforts to use less electricity have to continue.

“As you know, in San Antonio, it can stay hot until the early part of October in some cases,” Moreno said. “Even if we're not in this situation, it's always a good idea for customers to save energy and save money.”

Both ERCOT and CPS Energy say it’s important to practice energy-saving measures during peak hours, between 3 p.m. and 7 p.m.

Among the recommendations are that homeowners bump up their thermostats to at least 78 degrees, use fans to cool down a room and keep blinds and shades drawn to keep out the heat.

Using large appliances such as ovens, dishwashers and dryers during those peak hours also should be avoided.

For more tips on how to cut back on electricity usage, visit the CPS Energy or ERCOT websites.

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