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Xcel Energy, regional co-ops issue energy alert


Copyright © 2021 Roswell Daily Record

With extreme cold temperatures gripping the region, Xcel Energy and electric cooperatives in parts of Texas and in eastern and southeastern New Mexico have declared a higher energy alert level, and are urging customers to cut back on use of electricity, according to information from the Roswell/Chaves County Office of Emergency Management.

“Extreme cold weather has created energy deficiencies in the Southwest Power Pool’s (SPP) region,” according to a post on the Facebook page of the local Office of Emergency Management. “SPP manages the electric grid across 17 central and western U.S. states … SPP and Xcel Energy declare an energy alert only when a reduction in electricity use is urgently needed to maintain continuity of the electricity system and service to customers.”

David Hudson, president of Xcel Energy-New Mexico, Texas, said, “We are making a public appeal to our customers to turn off lights and appliances unless it would harm their health.”

Xcel Energy, according to the post, indicates that if customers do not reduce use, demand may exceed electricity the company can supply — and failure to reduce demand could result in rotating controlled service interruptions within the region.

“We take our responsibility to supply energy to our customers very seriously, and we declared this energy alert only after exhausting all other options,” Hudson said.

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If controlled outages become necessary, it’s expected the outages will last between 35 and 45 minutes. Suggestions on how to reduce electric load include the following:

• Set thermostats to 68 degrees or lower.

• Suspend use of electrical appliances (dishwashers, washing machines, dryers, vacuum cleaners, etc.).

• Put off tasks at work, if possible, that would demand electricity (power tools, maintenance equipment, etc.).

• Turn off televisions and electronic equipment unless they are necessary to conduct business or to ensure health and safety.

• Turn off unnecessary lighting.

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