By Alexandra Meeks, CNN
California’s power grid operator has issued a statewide alert urging residents to cut back electricity use Wednesday due to higher-than-normal temperatures expected in Northern California and tight energy supplies across the West.
Officials called for voluntary electricity conservation from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. Wednesday to avoid rolling outages during the persistent heat, the California Independent System Operator said in a press release.
In order to avoid straining the state’s power grid, consumers are urged to turn off unnecessary lights, set air conditioner thermostats to 78 degrees or higher, and delay using major appliances until after 9 p.m., CAISO said.
“The conservation measures can help stabilize the power grid during a time of tight demand and supply and avoid power interruptions,” the release said.
Some Northern California cities, including Sacramento and Redding, are expected to reach triple digits Wednesday and remain abnormally warm the rest of the week, according to the National Weather Service. Some valleys of Siskiyou and Shasta counties are expecting dangerously hot conditions with temperatures reaching up to 110 degrees, NWS said.
The high temperatures are not reserved to California.
A ridge of high pressure is bringing a heat wave with above-average high temperatures to much of the central portion of the country.
“Around 75% of the US population will see a high above 90° over the next week, and 32 million people will swelter above 100°,” CNN meteorologist Dave Hennen said.
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