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News Release
PGE shares ways to stay cool and reduce electricity use during high heat - 07/08/24

As high heat continues today and tomorrow, customers can reduce energy use and support grid resilience

 

PORTLAND, Ore. — After several days of hot weather with higher temperatures forecast for tomorrow, there are several ways customers can stay cool and reduce electricity use during high heat. 

Over 200,000 PGE customers are enrolled in demand response programs like Peak Time Rebates and Smart Thermostat, which enable PGE to safely reduce power use on the system. These programs help alleviate overall stress on the electrical system when the hottest part of a day coincides with the highest peak demand.  

PGE continues to monitor the weather and its system closely and is ready to respond to service interruptions, should they occur. Over the initial four days of the heat event, PGE crews responded to several small, localized heat-related outages, restoring power quickly for customers. 

 

WHAT: Media availability - PGE spokesperson discusses ways customers can reduce electricity use and stay cool during summer heat.

WHEN: Monday, July 8, 2 – 3 p.m.

WHERE: PGE headquarters, 1 World Trade Center, 121 SW Salmon Street, Portland – Plaza

 

Summer power use typically peaks between 3 – 9 p.m. During these periods, residential customers can safely reduce energy use during high heat:

  • If you have air conditioning (AC), use your thermostat to manage temperatures carefully.
    • Increase the temperature in your home a few degrees, as comfort and safety allow, to help reduce power consumption.
    • If temperatures cool down enough for comfort, consider turning the AC off at night and opening windows (if you can do so safely) to cool with outside air. 
    • During daytime hours, run the AC only when you are at home and keep daytime temperatures at the highest comfortable level. Cool only rooms lived in. 
  • Avoid using large electrical appliances like ovens, dishwashers and washing machines during peak morning and evening electricity use periods.
  • If you charge an electric vehicle at home and are not enrolled in PGE's Smart Charging program, consider setting your car to charge during off-peak hours.
  • Sign-up for programs that help save energy and money
    • Peak Time Rebates rewards you for shifting your energy use during peak times – when energy demand and prices are highest. 
    • When you are enrolled in the Smart Thermostat program, your thermostat automatically adjusts a few degrees to shift your energy use away from peak times.
  • Learn more energy saving tips at portlandgeneral.com/tips.

PGE employees are working to address or prevent potential heat-related equipment issues and lower energy demand, including:

  • Taking technical precautions to help keep essential distribution equipment from overheating.
  • Assigning extra crews to make sure we can quickly and effectively respond to any outages. 
  • Activating the Peak Time Rebate and Smart Thermostat programs. 
  • Encouraging commercial and industrial customers to reduce electricity use.

The high heat means customers are using more electricity to cool their homes and businesses. High demand places extra stress on electrical equipment, and that can lead to power outages. That is why it is important to be prepared. 

  • Have an outage kit with needed supplies ready just in case.
  • If you rely on electricity for your health and you are not yet a part of the PGE medical certificate program, call to enroll.
  • Think about food safety – make extra ice by freezing water in plastic bags so you can keep food cold if needed. Have thermometers in your fridge and freezer to monitor for safe temperatures and have foods on hand that do not require cooking or cooling. Find helpful food-safety tips at FoodSafety.gov

Helpful Links

 

About Portland General Electric Company 

Portland General Electric (NYSE: POR) is an integrated energy company that generates, transmits and distributes electricity to over 930,000 customers serving an area of 1.9 million Oregonians. For more than 130 years, Portland General Electric (PGE) has powered social progress delivering safe, affordable, reliable and increasingly clean electricity while working to transform energy systems to meet evolving customer needs. PGE customers have set the standard for prioritizing clean energy with the No. 1 voluntary renewable energy program in the country. PGE is committed to reducing emissions from its retail power supply by 80% by 2030 and 100% by 2040. PGE is recognized by the Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index for the company’s commitment to creating a more equal, inclusive workplace. In 2023, PGE employees, retirees and the PGE Foundation donated nearly $4.6 million and volunteered over 23,000 volunteer hours to more than 400 nonprofit organizations. For more information: portlandgeneral.com/news

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