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Californians urged to conserve energy amid winter storm, rolling blackouts in Midwest

California utilities are calling on the state to conserve energy during the evening hours to ease stressed grid conditions in the Midwest, Texas and Southeast

CALIFORNIA, USA — Californians are being urged to voluntarily conserve their electric and gas usage during the evening to ease stressed grid conditions in the Midwest, Texas, and Southeast.

The California Independent System Operator conveyed the message noting that they don't anticipate any reliability issues in California. However, they said the effort would help other places in the West.

"California receives energy from entities located outside of the state, and it also exports energy to entities located out of the state. The energy that Californian’s conserve can be sent to entities in other states to help them meet their energy demand," said Vonette Fontaine, spokesperson for CAISO.  

PG&E joined the call to action as well, asking their customers to voluntarily conserve. The utility said the winter storm is bringing severe weather conditions to several states and is prompting rolling blackouts by utilities due to the low electricity supplies.

The utility said the biggest impact is being felt in areas like Texas, where this kind of winter weather is rare. According to the National Weather Service, Houston set a record low temperature of 17 degrees, which beat a record dating back to 1905.

CAISO is not expecting any outages in California, but they're monitoring the storm conditions in other states. On PG&E's end, they also don't anticipate any issues meeting the current demand for power.

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