Heat grid could be strained due to hot temperatures

Back home here in Western Canada, wildfires and air quality aren’t the only causes for concern. Temperatures in our region are expected to climb again Tuesday and this could cause the heat grid to be strained as more residents will likely be using their air conditioning units and fans to keep cool. But how does this affect the average consumer? Trevor Lewington with Ridge Utilities explains.  

“Typically you get a spike in prices. So if you’re on what’s called the regulated rate, like if you’re riding the market, that spike in demand combined with a lack of supply will cause power prices to spike within a day. And that does impact about a third of Albertans that are on a regulated rate option, which is the default power rate. Two thirds of Albertans are on a fixed rate plan, they’ll see no difference whatsoever. But for that one third on a floating rate, those price spikes influence the price that you pay at the end of the month. And so that’s why the average consumer is kind of concerned about making sure that that happens effectively.”

Lewington says at times the Alberta Electrical System Operator will send out alerts to folks during the summertime asking for people to cut back on their use of air conditioning and fans, so a blackout does not happen.   

Angela Stewart

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