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NH utility offers incentives to reduce energy use in the middle of the heat wave




As the heat wave continues in New Hampshire, concerns about energy costs are rising, especially during peak usage. Utility officials said demand for electricity peaks from 4 to 7 p.m., when people come home from work and turn up the air conditioning. They said there are ways to save money and ease the stress of the electric grids while still being comfortable. Officials said that shifting the air conditioner or thermostat by 7 to 10 degrees for eight hours a day can cut energy costs by as much as 10% per day. year. Dehumidifiers help reduce costs because the air conditioner does not have to work as hard. Other advice includes changing your air conditioner filter, using a ceiling fan, closing blinds during the day, using a clothesline instead of a dryer and cooking on the grill “Try not to use your dishwasher tonight if you don̵[ads1]7;t need to. Wait until later on evening,” said William Hinkle of Eversource. “Try not to run your washer or dryer, things like that.” Smart wireless thermostats can also help optimize energy use, officials said. Eversource offers a demand response program to residential and commercial ratepayers, targeting peak demand hours. “They’ll get an alert on a particularly hot day like today, and if they choose to participate in the demand response program and they limit their use or reduce their energy use, we’ll give them an incentive,” Hinkle said. The cost of energy is highest during the mid to late afternoon. “That’s when solar starts to go off the grid,” said Alec O’Meara, of Unitil. “The sun is lower in the sky, but it’s still very hot outside, so people are still using the AC.” Because the utilities set rates every six months based on the previous six months, officials said saving energy now could have benefits later. If we as a region can lower the peak energy consumption times, that has the potential to lower energy costs down the road,” O’Meara said. Utility officials said the region relies on fossil fuels for much of its energy production, which reduces demand. i rush hour helps to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases.

As the heat wave continues in New Hampshire, concerns about energy costs are rising, especially during peak usage.

Utility officials said demand for electricity peaks from 4 to 7 p.m., when people come home from work and turn up the air conditioning. They said there are ways to save money and ease the stress of the power grids while still staying comfortable.

Officials said that moving the air conditioner or thermostat by 7 to 10 degrees for eight hours a day can reduce energy costs by as much as 10% per year. Dehumidifiers help reduce costs because the air conditioner does not have to work as hard.

Other advice includes changing the air conditioner’s filter, using a ceiling fan, closing blinds during the day, using a clothesline instead of a tumble dryer and cooking on the grill.

“Try not to use your dishwasher tonight if you don’t need to. Wait until later in the evening,” said William Hinkle of Eversource. “Try not to run the washer or dryer, things like that.”

Smart wireless thermostats can also help optimize energy use, officials said.

Eversource offers a demand response program to residential and commercial ratepayers, targeting peak demand hours.

“They’ll get an alert on a particularly hot day like today, and if they choose to participate in the demand response program and they limit their use or reduce their energy use, we’ll give them an incentive,” Hinkle said.

Energy costs are highest from mid to late afternoon.

“That’s when solar starts to go off the grid,” said Alec O’Meara, of Unitil. “The sun is lower in the sky, but it’s still very hot outside, so people are still using the AC.”

Because the utilities set rates every six months based on the previous six months, officials said saving energy now could have benefits later.

“If we as a region can lower the peak energy usage times, that has the potential to lower energy costs down the road,” O’Meara said.

Utility officials said the region relies on fossil fuels for much of its energy production, so reducing demand during peak hours helps reduce greenhouse gas emissions.



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