Energy companies offering conservation tips in wake of hot temperatures

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- ERCOT says a new record was set Thursday for electricity demand as temperatures continue to increase.

ERCOT, which manages 90 percent of Texas' electrical grid, says it can't rule out rolling outages with record energy use.

It is something that Texas hasn't had to experience since 2011 and in Houston since 2006.

A rolling outage is when the lights go out for about 15 minutes then come back on.

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Wildlife animals also suffering in the heat, Christine Dobbyn has more.

At the ERCOT headquarters near Austin, employees monitor the amount of energy being produced and used.

While conservation is strongly encouraged, CenterPoint Energy says it applies most to non-essential usage or usage that could be delayed. Any usage for health and safety reasons should remain a priority.

"When you talk conservation it means things you do not need," said Ed Scott, director of operations at CenterPoint Energy. "Obviously if there are items you need, for whatever it may be, you need to continue to use those items. That's where we come in. We're monitoring and maintaining and we want that reliable electric service provided to you."

Officials say the peak demand is from 3 to 7 p.m. Users are advised to set thermostats two to three degrees higher and turn off/unplug non-essential lights and appliances.
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