Power Grid Ready for Summer Demand
Electricity use in the Summer months increases an average of twenty percent during the afternoon,. That's when power consumption hits its peak. This is due mainly to high use of air conditioning by consumers and businesses. Ellen Foley is a spokesperson for I-S-O New England, which operates the region's power grid. She says preparations for the warm-weather months typically begin well in advance.
"There's over 350 power plants that are located throughout the six-state New England region, and they are interconnected by over 8-thousand miles of high-voltage transmission lines. So in the springtime, the owners of the transmission lines and the power plants take their resources offline and they conduct maintenance to sort of tune up the machines and tune up the lines to get ready for the summertime. "
Foley says during the recent heat wave, with temperatures reaching 90 with high humidity, the power grid has continued to operate normally and well below record levels set during the Summer of 2006. In the event of an extended heat wave or issues with the grid, I-S-O says they have a number of steps in place to continue providing electricity. They include bringing in power from other regions and asking residents and businesses to conserve resources. .