LYNCHBURG, Tenn. — Get ready to Beat the Peak™ early next week! Duck River Electric Membership Corporation (DREMC) warns members that Monday morning’s predicted low temperatures could cause a demand peak for the month of November.
The fall season’s first frigid period will descend on southern Middle Tennessee this weekend. Morning lows will be in the 20s Sunday through Tuesday. Highs are not expected to rise out of the 50s.
DREMC plans to activate Beat the Peak™ from 6 through 8 a.m. Monday when a low of between 22-24 degrees is predicted. During this two-hour window, electricity demand is expected to be high due to home-heating load.
The cost of the wholesale power that DREMC buys from the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) spikes during a peak, going from around 11 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh) to more than $10 per kWh.
Beat the Peak™ participants help offset peak demand by lowering their thermostats and taking other steps to reduce electricity use. Emails and text messages are sent to co-op members enrolled in the program, asking them to conserve power during the peak hours.
DREMC also runs “peak alerts” on local radio stations. A peak alert doesn’t mean there is a power supply emergency. It is a reminder that high demand increases the cost of wholesale power and affects what DREMC must pay TVA.
“Demand charges cost us tens of millions of dollars every year. This is why reducing demand is so important, especially during extreme temperature periods,” says Michael Watson, DREMC’s president and CEO.
DREMC encourages members to set heating system thermostats down at least three degrees; turn off lights in unoccupied rooms; avoid using ovens and dish washers; delay doing laundry (especially running the clothes dryer); and reduce hot water use.
When the peak period has passed, normal use of electricity can resume.
“We’re not asking anyone to be uncomfortable, only to scale back on electricity use during the two-hour peak window,” Watson adds.
If you are a DREMC member who’d like to sign up to receive Beat the Peak™ warnings, go to www.dremc.com to register.