During the extreme heat waves that hit California in August and September, community choice aggregators (CCA) across the state, including associate members of CalChoice, joined statewide efforts to keep California’s power grid stable by conserving energy.
With help from energy leaders and customers to reduce energy consumption, the California Independent Systems Operator (CAISO), which manages the flow of electricity for 80 percent of California, was able to limit rolling blackouts and prevent longer, widespread power outages.
“We’re proud of our associate members who all took quick action to encourage their customers to conserve energy during peak hours,” said CalChoice Executive Director Jason Caudle. “Most of us Californians are receiving our electricity from the same grid, and when that grid is at risk, it’s important that we all do our part to keep the lights on.”
During August and September, CAISO issued multiple Flex Alerts calling for consumers to voluntarily conserve electricity during peak hours. CalChoice operational members took to social media and email communications to inform customers about the Flex Alerts and encouraged them to reduce energy usage.
In addition to online communications with customers, associate member Rancho Mirage Energy Authority (RMEA) also chose to close multiple City facilities, including City Hall and the local library, and contacted one of the highest consumers of electricity in Rancho Mirage to encourage limited energy consumption.
“Our hot desert climate in Rancho Mirage often leads to high energy consumption in our community,” said Isaiah Hagerman, Rancho Mirage City Manager. “We’re proud of residents and local businesses who stepped up to help reduce energy usage where possible. For most, this meant getting high energy usage out of the way before peak hours.”
During the Flex Alerts, consumers were asked to limit energy use between 3 and 10 p.m. by setting air conditioning to 78 degrees, deferring use of major appliances, turning off unnecessary lights and more. Consumers were also encouraged to prepare for the Flex Alerts by pre-cooking meals, charging electric vehicles and more before 3 p.m.
To learn more and receive notifications regarding Flex Alerts, visit flexalert.org.