NPU issues Power Alert for Thursday, Friday this week – Utility urges voluntary energy conservation measures for the next two days

Norwich – As excessive heat and humidity continues in large sections of the country and across Connecticut, Norwich Public Utilities (NPU) has issued a Power Alert and encourages customers to voluntarily conserve energy for the next two days.

“Today and tomorrow are going to be extremely warm so we’re asking customers to be mindful about how they use electricity,” said Chris LaRose, General Manager at NPU. “By using energy wisely, customers can save money on their bill and reduce the impact on our equipment over the next few days.”

NPU expects to see very high demand for electricity through the end of the week and is urging customers to use electricity wisely in the days ahead for two important reasons.

First, a portion of NPU’s annual costs for electricity are tied to ‘peak demand’ days, which are based on forecasts from ISO-New England, that could take place on Thursday or Friday this week. By using energy efficiently for the next few days, customers can help keep overall electric costs – for NPU and themselves – lower throughout the year.

Second, by thinking more about electricity use, the overall impact on NPU’s infrastructure – transmission lines, distribution lines, and transformers – will be minimized. By reducing the ‘wear and tear’ on NPU’s system over the next couple of days, this critical equipment will be able to cool down faster in the early evening hours and overnight, helping improve overall reliability.

“The extreme weather in the summer can be just as dangerous as a winter storm – so we’re asking our customers to keep an eye out on their friends and neighbors, especially the elderly,” said LaRose. “Public health and public safety go hand in hand, particularly during a heat wave.”

NPU is requesting that customers consider taking simple steps today and this week to conserve electricity that will have little or no impact on their comfort. These tips include:

  • Be smart about using an air conditioner. Only run a window unit when someone is home; NPU recommends setting a central AC system to 72 degrees or higher.
  • Consider waiting until after 8:00 pm to use major appliances like a dishwasher or clothes dryer.
  • Minimize the use of appliances or devices that generate heat before 8:00 pm – computers, curling irons, hairdryers, and televisions can all add to the heat in your home.
  • Avoid using the oven to cook and consider using a stove, microwave, or grilling outside.
  • Install energy-efficient lighting that runs much cooler than traditional lighting. Only about 10-15% of the electricity that incandescent lights use results in light – the rest is turned to heat.
  • Keep the sun out of your home by installing window coverings to minimize the heat coming into a home or business.