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Record demand for power in the north

Published: 27 Nov 2018 8:33am

The northern and far northern regions hit new records for electricity consumption last night as customers relied on air-conditioning for relief.

The north’s new record peak load of 627.5 megawatts was recorded at 7:20pm. The previous record was 604.2MW at 7.28pm on 1 February this year.

The far north’s new record peak load of 384.1 megawatts was recorded at 7:00pm.  The previous record was 371.9MW at 7:12pm on 17 February 2016.

Ergon Energy’s northern Network Operations Manager Matt Rigano said between 30%-40% of peak load could be attributed to air-conditioning use.

“On days and nights like this we find demand soars when people come home from work and school and switch on their air-conditioners and other appliances.

“We have a resilient network, which copes well with record electricity consumption in extreme temperatures.

“During the day and into the evening the control centre and field crews have been actively switching the network around to ensure we maintain the safest and most reliable configuration,” Mr Rigano said.

In one area of Townsville where the network was constrained, Ergon reduced the risk of more widespread outages by briefly switching off appliances connected to off-peak tariffs.

This network demand management tool is used as a last resort at times of high demand to protect customers from a total outage.

Please note: North includes Ingham to Bowen and west to Mount Isa. Far North is the area north of Ingham, including the Tablelands.

Media Contact: Emma Oliveri
Phone: 0457 566 079