NORTH TEXAS (CBSDFW.COM) – The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), the corporation that manages the electric grid for most of the state, broke an energy record on Monday.
The record for the most electricity used in July was broken between 4 p.m. and 5 p.m.
The peak demand record was more than 70,000 megawatts. A single megawatt is enough to power 500 homes during normal conditions and only 200 homes during peak demand.
Officials with ERCOT say a conservation plan will be put in place if power use gets close to exceeding supply.
But you can take steps like these to reduce energy consumption, especially during afternoon hours —
• Turn off all unnecessary lights, appliances, and electronic equipment
• When at home, close blinds and drapes that get direct sun
• Set air conditioning thermostats to 78 degrees or higher, and use fans to cool the air
• When away from home, set air conditioning thermostats to 85 degrees and turn all fans off before you leave
• Do not use dishwashers, laundry equipment, hair dryers, coffee makers, or other home appliances during the peak hours of 3 p.m. to 7 p.m.
• Avoid opening refrigerators or freezers more than necessary
The record breaking July comes after ERCOT energy use was up 10-percent in June compared to last year.