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Electricity demand drops as businesses shut down

ISO New England, which oversees New England's electrical grid, reported on Friday that demand for electricity has dropped 3 to 5% over the average for periods with similar weather to what we've been having:

In addition to overall declines in consumer demand, these societal changes are also affecting demand patterns across the region. Our forecasters are seeing load patterns that resemble those of snow days, when schools are closed and many are home during the day. These patterns include a slower than normal ramp of usage in the morning, and increased energy use in the afternoon. Though the pandemic is affecting energy usage, weather conditions remain the primary drivers of system demand.

Via Nathan Phillips.

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Comments

People confined to home, including those working or schooling from home, are going to use significantly more electricity there. Lights on longer, computers on longer, TVs and radios on longer, more cooking, even more dishwashing.

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I'm looking at hundreds of dollars more Gas, Electric, and Water now that I pay for things I used to get for free at the office.

Still, very happy to have a job and to be able to work from home.

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I had a chill earlier so I kicked on the heat a bit. I said to myself, "damn.. my utilities are gonna skyrocket the next few months from being home all the time"

Ah well, I look at this as payback for January of this year and September of 2019 where I traveled for almost the entire month where I paid next to nothing for my condo's utilities.

I expect my home bills to go up a lot.

Transportation bills, though ...

Unless you were diligent about turning down the heat every day when you go to work, I don't see home energy use going up that much. 9 watt LED bulbs and modern laptops don't use that much electricity.

Larger commercial buildings have elevators.

Must be rejoicing! A drastic decrease in energy usage, car usage, etc.

On the minus side, we are returning to disposable grocery bags and disposable coffee cups, and sharply cutting back public transportation. The whole high-density living trend could be at risk if this continues for a long time.

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One day's car commute probably uses the same energy as the manufacturing of a year's worth of disposable grocery bags and coffee cups.

Cutting back public transit which hardly anyone is riding is also a way to save energy. As long as the service gets restored when this is over, and there's no reason to think it won't be.

High-density housing isn't going anywhere. What do you think will happen? Everyone will flee to the woods and half the housing in the core cities and towns will sit vacant?

I see more walk able communities with smaller stores being an outcome of this.

I see transit being redefined.. better HVAC, protection for drivers, 'disaster service' (i.e. limited service to provide service but limiting driver/passenger contact.).

Denser communities isn't a bad thing. Its just we need to start to think about the problems that occur when having people so close together.

I also see stuff like walk up take out windows becoming a big thing again. Or redesigns of restaurants to have separate walk up/take out service doors with entirely walled off areas. Stores could be smaller, or moving to online/pick only is a breeze.

Take out and walk up windows will be big. very big in the future.

I also laughed when I saw what are few drive in theatres have show a big uptick in attendance.

Already down due to the Russian-Saudi fighting, we may go below $2 for the first time since at least Katrina.