FOLSOM (CBS13) – With sweltering temperatures roasting just about every part of the state, power officials have issued their first flex alert of the season, to avoid rolling blackouts.
We went inside California Independent System Operator (Cal ISO) in Folsom, the front line of the state’s power grid. That’s where officials are asking people to conserve power.
Cal ISO manages the state’s bulk electric power system.
“When a lot of people will help us shave megawatts off our grid, we won’t have to take stronger measures,” said Cal ISO Spokesman Steven Greenlee.
They’re urging Californians to use less power between the hours of 5-9 p.m. on Tuesday and Wednesday. That means holding off on using your washer and dryer and set air conditioners to 78 degrees or higher.
Officials say it won’t just lower electric bills, it’ll help keep the power on!
Just how much power can you really help save?
“If we can get people to help us just a little bit then collectively we can save 50 megawatts — something like five million homes,” Greenlee said.
That’s how many homes could’ve lost power in past heat waves.
Last year, Cal ISO issued a total of four flex alerts between June to September.
But with more heat in store, county health officials remind people that temperatures in homes without air conditioning can quickly rise to dangerous levels, particularly for people with health concerns.
The City of Sacramento says, despite the triple-digit heat, cooling centers won’t be opening this week. They only open when temperatures hit 105 degrees for three consecutive days.