The first days of triple-digit temperatures are expected this weekend, leading New Braunfels Utilities to call for its first Energy Action Days of the season.

The National Weather Service is predicting Saturday’s high to reach 98 degrees and is predicting a high of 102 on Sunday, with heat indices nearing 110 both days. With the high heat comes peak electrical demand exceeding 70,000 megawatts during the weekend. 

NBU will initiate Energy Action Days when peak demand is expected, and inform customers with an “Energy Action Day” icon posted at nbutexas.com and NBU’s social media channels. 

When customers see the icon, they are encouraged to help reduce energy as much as possible between 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. on those those days.

“The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), who manages the energy market in Texas, announced there is potential to enter Energy Emergency Alert status this summer in order to maintain system reliability,” said David Hubbard, NBU’s director of energy markets and customer solutions. “These alerts are called during periods of reduced energy reserves. 

“Acting as a good steward, on days with forecasted low reserves, NBU will be calling Energy Action Days throughout June, July, August and September, asking customers to reduce energy usage.” 

NBU is encouraging the following steps to reduce electricity use:

• Turn thermostats up by two to three degrees during peak hours between 3-7 p.m.

• Set programmable thermostats to higher temperatures when no one is home.

• Use fans to feel four to six degrees cooler. 

• Limit use of large appliances — dishwashers, washers and dryers — to mornings or after 7 p.m.

• Using a microwave or slow cooker for indoor cooking between 3-7 p.m.

• Closing blinds and drapes during late afternoon.

• Scheduling pool pumps to run in the early morning or overnight, and shut them off between 4-6 p.m.

NBU said if controlled interruptions of electric service become necessary under ERCOT Emergency Protocols, services could be interrupted for varying periods of time to relieve strain and prevent overload on the system. It will continue to share updates and post Energy Action Day notifications on its Facebook and Twitter accounts, and at nbutexas.com.

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