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IESO Looks for Public Assistance to Help Meet Expected Record Electricity Demands

June 27, 2005

The Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) is asking consumers to reduce their use of electricity on Tuesday, June 28th to help deal with the expected record demands for electricity.

Ontario's electricity demand reached 26,000 megawatts (MW) late Monday afternoon, breaking the previous record of 25,414 MW set on August 13th, 2002. The demand for electricity Tuesday is expected to reach or exceed those record levels.

As a result, consumers and businesses are being asked to reduce their electricity consumption, where possible, between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. tomorrow to reduce the strain on Ontario's power system.

Power Warnings are issued by the IESO during periods of high demand for electricity, when supplies of reserve power are low. Any further reduction in transmission or generation availability or any increase in demand could create shortfalls of electricity and require proactive actions such as emergency purchases from other jurisdictions or voltage reduction on the Ontario system.

Consumers and businesses can reduce the demands on the electricity system by immediately:

* Turning off all but essential internal and external lights;
* Setting air conditioners to 26 degrees Celsius or higher, or using fans as an alternative;
* Closing curtains and blinds to keep out the sun and retain cooler air inside; and 
* Delaying the use of major power-consuming equipment such as dishwashers, washers and dryers and swimming pool pumps until after 8:00 p.m.

The IESO is responsible for managing Ontario's bulk electricity system and operating the wholesale electricity market. For more information, visit www.ieso.ca.