April 2, 2001
ROSEMEAD, Calif., April 2, 2001--The California Independent System Operator (Cal-ISO) declared a Stage 2 Emergency this morning, due to very low power reserves, and called upon Southern California Edison and other investor-owned utilities to begin voluntary "load" curtailment programs for certain customers within their service areas.
Cal-ISO and SCE are making urgent appeals for all customers to immediately reduce their electricity consumption so that reserve levels do not deteriorate further.
To achieve this load reduction during Stage 2, SCE is required to activate its voluntary load curtailment program, under which large industrial, commercial, and agricultural customers have agreed to temporarily curtail electricity usage during an electrical emergency in exchange for reduced rates.
Should the situation worsen for any reason, and power reserves drop below 1.5%, Cal-ISO could declare a Stage 3 Emergency, the most critical status. Cal-ISO could direct utilities to "drop load," necessitating involuntary rolling blackouts for groups of customers across their service areas until sufficient reserve levels are achieved.
SCE customers are asked to reduce power consumption by turning off any unneeded electrical appliances and lights, especially during the state's daily peak consumption period--1 p.m. to 5 p.m.
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An Edison International company, Southern California Edison is one of the nation's largest electric utilities, serving a population of more than 11 million via 4.3 million customer accounts in a 50,000-square-mile service area within central, coastal and Southern California.