Power consumption record set as temperature soars in Alberta

Thursday’s soaring afternoon heat resulted in Albertans setting a new summertime record for power consumption and an advisory from AHS.

Heat advisory issued by Alberta Health Services for Calgary area

People cool off at Prairie Winds Park in northeast Calgary. (Mike Symington/CBC)

Thursday's soaring afternoon heat resulted in Albertans setting a new summertime record for power consumption.

As of 5 p.m.,10,520 megawatts of electricity was used in the province, according to the Alberta Electric System Operator (AESO).

A new record is usually set every summer as Alberta's population increases.

Summer peak demand was previously set at 10,419 MW on July 30 last year, AESO says. In the last three years the peak was reached in late July.

AESO says there is adequate supply to meet demand so there is no formal call for people to cut back on their power use.

Heat advisory 

Continued high temperatures have prompted Alberta Health Services to issue a heat advisory for the Calgary area.

AHS is advising people to protect themselves from the potentially harmful effects of the sun, such as heat stroke, exhaustion and burns.

Health officials suggest:

  • Do outdoor activities in the cooler hours of the day.
  • Take frequent breaks from the heat.
  • Drink lots of water.
  • Monitor for symptoms of heat stroke, including high body temperature, lack of sweat, disorientation and fainting.
  • Wear a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses.
  • Use sunscreen of at least SPF 30 at least 20 minutes before going outside.

"Normal activity that may be safe on a cool day might be dangerous in current weather conditions. If you start to feel overheated, stop your activity immediately, seek shade and drink fluids," said Dr. Brent Friesen, medical officer of health for the Calgary Zone. 


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