If you look around your home, you likely have more devices and equipment that require electricity than ever before. Our connected lives are increasingly dependent on more electricity to function. At the same time, as demand for electricity rises, Singing River Electric must deliver an uninterrupted 24/7 power supply––regardless of market conditions or other circumstances.
As you would expect based on your family’s habits, electricity use fluctuates throughout the day based on consumer demand. We must be able to provide enough electricity to meet the energy needs of all members during times of highest energy use or “peak hours.” These peak times are typically in the morning as people start their day and in the evening as people return to their homes.
What you may not know is that electric utilities typically pay more for electricity––either from a power plant or from another utility with excess power––during those morning and evening “energy rush hours.” In addition, the electricity demand is even higher when it’s especially cold outside when heating systems must run longer to warm our homes.
If the “peak times” concept is a bit puzzling, here’s an easy way to think about it, and it’s similar to a major concert. We know costs go up when there is strong demand for tickets (or electricity), and both are subject to the basic economic laws of supply and demand. When a lot of people want the same thing, it’s more expensive. When they don’t, it’s cheaper––like a bargain matinee or an “early bird” special at a restaurant.
During peak periods when the cost to produce and purchase power is higher, we encourage you to take simple steps to save energy, such as turning your thermostat down a few notches, turning off unnecessary lights, and waiting to use large appliances during off-peak times.
You can also save energy by plugging electronics and equipment such as computers, printers, and TVs into a power strip, then turning it off at the switch during peak hours. If you have a programmable thermostat, adjust the settings to sync up with off-peak rate periods. When we all work together to reduce energy use during periods of high electricity demand, we can relieve pressure on the grid and save a little money along the way.
Another benefit of this time-of-use approach to electricity use allows greater control over your bill. Reducing the peak impacts the power-supply cost to every co-op member. This is particularly noticeable as energy costs have risen across the U.S. Collectively, everyone conserving energy and making small changes can truly make a difference.
Remember, taking simple steps to save energy throughout the day and shifting energy-intensive chores to off-peak hours is a smart choice for you and our community. Visit https://singingriver.com/ways-to-save/ for more ways to save.
Singing River Electric has an 84-year heritage of providing safe, reliable, and affordable electricity to our local communities that we call home. SRE serves more than 78,000 meters across 7,651 miles of power lines in seven counties in Mississippi (Jackson, George, Greene, Perry, Stone, Wayne, and Harrison) and two counties in Alabama (Mobile and Washington). The electric distribution cooperative works with Cooperative Energy to provide its members with a diverse mix of generation resources including five small-scale solar sites locally and a 540-acre solar site in Lamar County. For more information, follow our conversations on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.