From: ENN
Published July 20, 2005 12:00 AM

NSTAR Reports Record Energy Use During Heatwave

BOSTON — With high temperatures and oppressive humidity bearing down on New England, NSTAR Electric & Gas yesterday set a new all-time record for electricity delivered to its 1.1 million electric customers. NSTAR estimates, at 3 p.m. on July 19 it provided 4700 megawatts of electricity to its customers, surpassing by more than 4% the previous record set during the stifling summer of 2002.


"Our system and our employees are doing an outstanding job, despite the record-breaking demand we're seeing today," said Werner Schweiger, NSTAR's Senior Vice President of Operations. "We have extra crews on working to monitor the system to make sure it operates smoothly during this crucial time."


With the forecast calling for high temperatures through the end of the week, NSTAR is expecting very high electricity usage through the weekend. Similarly, the New England region as a whole is seeing exceptional energy usage due to extreme weather.


Although NSTAR's infrastructure has met the soaring electric need, the Company is reminding customers to use electricity responsibly during the heat wave.


"During these times of record heat, conservation goes a long way toward keeping the system running well while also helping customers save money," Schweiger added.


The company offered the following suggestions for smart home energy usage during the heat wave:


Air conditioning:


-- Close blinds and shades during the day to naturally cool the house.
-- Turn off unnecessary lights which emit heat and work against air conditioning.
-- Consider slightly raising the temperature setting on your air conditioner. A degree or two won't affect your comfort level, but can drastically reduce your energy use.


Laundry:


-- Do it in the late evening during "off-peak" hours.
-- Wash clothes in warm or cold water, rather than hot. A whopping 85% of the energy consumed by washing machines is used to heat the water.
-- Clean the filter on your dryer after each use to maximize its efficiency.


Kitchen:


-- Use your microwave, rather than the oven or stove. Microwaves reduce cooking time and don't heat up the kitchen.
-- Run the dishwasher at night and only with full loads.


Home Office:


-- Shut off your computer screen when it is not in use. As much as 60% of a computer's power is used by the monitor.


-- Consider unplugging other home electronics when not in use (such as unused TVs, stereos, etc.) They continue to draw power, even when turned off.


NSTAR transmits and delivers electricity and natural gas to 1.4 million customers in Eastern and Central Massachusetts; including over one million electric customers in 81 communities and nearly 300,000 gas customers in 51 communities.


Source: Business Wire, NSTAR


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