Albertans set another record demand for electricity

CALGARY, Dec. 14 /CNW/ - For the second time this month, Alberta's demand for electricity reached a record high of 10,236 megawatts (MW) during the hour of 6 p.m., breaking the 10,046 MW record set on December 7, 2009.

"This is typically the time of year when Albertans place the largest demand on the electricity system," says Jeff Nish, Alberta Electric System Operator (AESO) Director of Forecasting.

"Reduced daylight hours combined with the prolonged cold front Alberta has been experiencing are the major factors pushing demand to new record levels."

The AESO's system controllers monitor the electricity grid 24 hours per day, seven days per week, working with transmission facility owners and power generation owners to ensure that even during times of high demand, contingency plans are in place and reserves are available to meet the electricity demands of all Albertans.

The following are tips for Albertans to help reduce the demand on the electricity system:

    
    - Run major appliances (washers, dryers, dishwashers) during off-peak
      hours (after 7:00 p.m.)
    - Turn off unnecessary lights
    - Turn off non-essential electrical appliances
    - Connect a timer to your vehicle's block heater
    

The AESO forecasts load 24 hours in advance. It is located on the AESO website at: http://ets.aeso.ca/ets_web/ip/Market/Reports/ActualForecastWMRQHReportServlet.

To view current supply and demand on Alberta's electricity grid, updated hourly on the AESO's website, visit the following link: http://ets.aeso.ca/ets_web/ip/Market/Reports/CSDReportServlet.

As an independent system operator, the AESO leads the safe, reliable and economic planning and operation of Alberta's interconnected power system. The AESO also facilitates Alberta's fair, efficient and openly competitive wholesale electricity market, which has about 200 participants and approximately $9 billion in annual energy transactions.

SOURCE Alberta Electric System Operator

For further information: For further information: Dawn Delaney, Corporate Communications, AESO, Ph: (403) 539-2846, Cell: (403) 671-6129, Email: dawn.delaney@aeso.ca

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