California's power grid operator issued a flex alert to encourage state residents to conserve energy Thursday evening as temperatures on the West Coast hit triple digits.
The California Independent System Operator encouraged residents across the state to reduce their energy use between 5 and 10 p.m. Thursday by setting thermostats to 78 degrees or higher, cooling rooms with fans or by closing curtains, turning off unneeded lights and avoiding using large appliances.
Officials said Wednesday that they are not currently forecasting rolling blackouts similar to the ones the state saw during heat waves last August and September.
"The current forecast for shortage is relatively modest," said system operator CEO Elliot Mainzer during a briefing on the flex alert, adding that the alert was issued out of a "preponderance of caution."
The Bay Area is also under a Spare the Air Alert Thursday after the Bay Area Air Quality Management District said Wednesday that high temperatures are expected to combine with vehicle exhaust to create an excessive amount of smog.
Mainzer and other system operator officials noted that energy levels may become more stressed this summer, but the state should have ample energy for now as long as residents reduce their usage this week.
"We're optimistic that if we just stay really focused and folks lean in with us that we can minimize the probability of rotating outages.