Entergy customers asked to cut back on usage

Halen Doughty

The Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO), Entergy’s reliability coordinator, is requesting Entergy customers voluntarily reduce their electricity usage today.

The unusual request was made as freezing temperatures set in across Louisiana. As people stay indoors, power usage could exceed available generation. Higher than expected demand for power and unexpected generator outages could create problems in the region.

Similar requests have been made across the Midwest, including other utilities near Entergy’s service area. Periodic power outages would be needed if the power supply cannot meet the demand. Customers are asked to reduce their electricity usage until at least 11 a.m. Thursday.

“We apologize for any inconvenience,” said Dennis Dawsey, Entergy’s vice president for customer service in Louisiana. “The arctic blast is driving up electricity usage. This is an unusual situation MISO is working to correct as soon as possible.”

Dawsey added that the request does not apply to elderly customers or those with special health concerns. To balance the power supply with demand, Entergy has arrangements with some corporate customers that allow for power curtailments. But there are ways residential customers can help too.

MISO is asking customers to lower the thermostat to 68 degrees or lower. Delay laundry, washing dishes, and bathing until later in the day when temperatures rise. Don’t allow warm air to escape from the home. Fill holes and gaps where wiring and pipes enter the home, and check caulking around doors and windows.

Entergy Louisiana provides electrical service to more than one million customers and natural gas service to nearly 93,000 customers in the Greater Baton Rouge Area. The company has operations in south, central, and northeast Louisiana.

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