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Danville Utilities is requesting that its electric customers conserve power today, Thursday and Friday from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. because of a peak alert issued by its wholesale power supplier. Peak alerts are issued when it is anticipated that the system-wide demand for electricity may be at its highest.
Transmission charges for Danville and other utilities are set, in part, by their peak usage during these periods of high demand across the regional power grid. With each added megawatt, utilities are billed thousands of dollars in peaking charges.
“There’s plenty of power available and the grid is in good shape, but if we can conserve during these peak hours, then we can save on transmission and capacity costs next year,” said Meagan Baker, key accounts manager for Danville. “Lowering the peak demand will help keep electricity rates low.”
American Municipal Power, the wholesale power supplier for Danville and more than 130 other members in five states, issued the peak alert due to the hot and humid conditions expected this week. Temperatures in communities across the power grid are expected to reach the 90s. Peak usage likely will occur on hot and humid afternoons when air conditioners are working extra hard to cool homes and buildings.
Customers can take simple conservation steps such as shutting off lights when not needed; unplugging small appliances and electric chargers (especially those with small lights); raising the thermostat a degree or two; closing curtains, drapes and blinds; doing laundry, running the dishwasher and other household chores requiring electricity during hours other than the peak hours; and turning off televisions, computers, radios, and other electronic devices when not being used.