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California Asks Residents to Limit EV Charging Over Labor Day Weekend

Greetings from California, where it’s currently hot as hell. So hot, actually, that hawaii issued a Flex Alert on Wednesday asking residents to save energy when possible in order to avoid putting extra pressure on California’s already strained power grid. Which means limiting the usage of air conditioning rather than running major appliances during peak hours. However the state can be requesting cooperation with another ask: Don’t charge your electric vehicle.

In its bulletin, the California Independent System Operator specifically asks residents to “avoid charging electric vehicles as the Flex Alert is in place.” The ISO says drivers should charge their cars before 4 p.m., of which point “conservation begins to become most significant.”

The ISO “manages the flow of electricity over the high-voltage, long-distance transmission lines delivering capacity to the state’s three investor-owned utilities,” in accordance with the organization’s website. A short Flex Alert was issued on Wednesday, Aug. 31, however the ISO extended it to Thursday, Sept. 1, and says more can happen throughout Labor Day weekend. “With excessive heat in the forecast across a lot of hawaii and Western US, the grid operator is again expecting high electricity demand, primarily from air-con use, and is calling for the general public to conserve just as much electricity as you possibly can from 4 to 9 p.m.,” the business said in its statement.

This announcement occurs the heels of California banning the sale of internal-combustion cars by 2035. Sure, a charging restriction may seem hypocritical in the wake of the ban on fossil fuel vehicles, but a strategic power conservation arrange for this weekend and a shift to EV-only sales 13 years from now aren’t totally related.

“In what’s apt to be probably the most extensive heat wave up to now in the west this season, temperatures in Northern California are anticipated to be 10-20 degrees warmer than normal through Tuesday, Sept. 6,” the ISO said. “In Southern California, temperatures are anticipated to be 10-18 degrees warmer than normal.” Stay cool on the market, friends.

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