BC Hydro says demand for power up 13 per cent during cold snap
CTV Vancouver Island
Published Tuesday, February 5, 2019 9:37AM PST
With temperatures plummeting in a province-wide cold snap, BC Hydro says demand for electricity has risen by an average of 13 per cent.
BC Hydro compared electricity usage on Feb. 3 and 4 to the same days last week, before a modified arctic air mass swept across the province.
The forecast for much of B.C. predicts colder than normal temperatures in the coming week.
BC Hydro says demand for power will remain high and could even break records, forecasting peak hourly demands of up to 10,000 megawatts.
"This highest hourly peak demand was recorded on January 3, 2017 when consumption reached 10,194 megawatts," the company said in an info bulletin.
On average, British Columbians use the most power between 4 and 8 p.m. on weekday evenings in winter.
To try to keep your electricity bill low, BC Hydro recommends keeping the thermostat at 16 degrees when away from home, 18 degrees when cooking or doing housework and 21 degrees when relaxing.
It also recommends that homeowners install draftproofing to seal gaps and cracks around doors, which can reduce heat loss by up to 10 per cent.
Closing curtains, blinds and drapes can also provide an extra layer of insulation to reduce drafts.