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Updated: AESO ends power grid alert for Alberta

Residents asked to turn off unneccessary lights and appliances
grid-alert
The Alberta Electric System Operator (AESO) declared a grid alert Monday evening (July 8).

Update:

A grid alert was ended at 9:49 p.m. Monday, July 8. AESO asked people Monday to conserve power.

Original Story:

The Alberta Electric System Operator (AESO), which manages and operates the provincial power grid, declared a Grid Alert Monday evening (July 8) at 8:25 pm

AESO is asking Albertans to conserve power during peak hours (4 to 7 pm) by doing the following:

  • Turn off unnecessary lights and electrical appliances
  • Minimize the use of air conditioning/space heaters
  • Delay the use of major power-consuming appliances such as washers, dryers and dishwashers until after peak hours
  • Use cold water for washing clothes—most of the energy used goes to heating the water (only running full loads helps too)
  • Delay charging electric vehicles and/or plugging in block heaters
  • Cook with your microwave, crockpot or toaster oven instead of the stove
  • Limit the use of kitchen or bathroom ventilation fans
  • Use motion-detector lights in storage areas, garages, and outdoors when possible
  • Work on a laptop instead of a desktop computer (laptops are more energy-efficient than desktop units)

AESO issues Grid Alerts when the power system is under stress and they are preparing to use emergency reserves to meet demand and maintain system reliability. Consumers are asked to reduce their electricity use during Grid Alerts to help mitigate the possibility of undertaking more serious emergency measures to balance the system, including rotating power outages.

According to AESO's website, grid alerts can be triggered by different factors that affect power generation and electricity demand, such as:

  • Extremely cold or hot weather, which drives increased use of heating or air conditioning systems
  • Time of day and wind conditions, which impact the availability of solar and wind-generated energy
  • Unplanned generation facility outages
  • Other factors beyond transmission and generation facility owners’ control, such as lightning, downed power lines, etc.

AESO has not announced the specific factor causing this grid alert.