British Columbia

B.C. heat wave hiking power consumption

Here's a few tips from BC Hydro to help keep power consumption down.

Hydro says power consumption is up 10 to 15 per cent

Swimmers cool off during the B.C. heatwave in Canada's warmest lake, Sasamat. (Yvette Brend/CBC)

The current heat wave is hiking power use in BC. 

Air conditioners and non-stop fans burned through 15 per cent more energy Saturday evening than a week ago, according to BC Hydro.

Sunday was cooler, but demand still ran 10 per cent higher than the previous week, and Hydro says, that's the equivalent of burning through all the power of an additional generating unit at Mica Dam, the largest generating station in B.C.

B.C. Hydro offers 5 tips for keeping the heat down without burning through power. (CBC)

Despite the heat-driven hikes in power use, BC Hydro still sees the highest electricity loads in the winter, because air conditioning is still not as widely used here as as it is in California and Ontario.

BC Hyrdo urges people to help save money and energy by:

  • Drawing the blinds and shading windows — can block 65 per cent of the heat
  • Using a ceiling fan that's rotating counter-clockwise — more efficient and better cooling 
  • Turning off the clothes dryer and hanging laundry — cuts down on unnecessary heat and power use 
  • Cooking outside — cuts down on heat in your home, so barbecue often
  • Cutting shower lengths and making them cooler —  keeps heat down


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