RPU urges limited electricity use during heat - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

RPU urges limited electricity use during heat

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ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) -- The intense heat may tempt you to crank up the air conditioner but Rochester Public Utilities (RPU) is urging you not to.

RPU is asking people to limit their electricity use because of the heat and all the air conditioners in use.

RPU's Tony Benson says thermostats should be set to 78 degrees Fahrenheit or higher, all week.

"Yeah, setting your air conditioner at 65 [degrees Fahrenheit] is great and you're definitely cool... but you can really achieve pretty much that same feeling by taking the humidity out of your house at say a 78 or 77 degree setting," Benson stated.

So why the limit?

Benson says it'd be expensive for RPU to buy more energy the day of, in the real-time market.

"That's ultimately going to save us money and save our customer's money as well," Benson said.

RPU was at 269 megawatts of electricity use around three on Monday afternoon.

Its all-time peak was 292 megawatts back on July 20, 2011.

Several cities are implementing this, including Austin.

RPU predicts there will be less energy use on Wednesday since many businesses will be closed during July 4.

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