Entergy under power pressures due to ‘Perfect Storm'

The following is a news release from Entergy:

Entergy Under Power Pressures Due to 'Perfect Storm'

Storms, flooding, high heat and maintenance challenging companies' ability to meet demands

Southwest, La. — The combination of damage from recent storms, current flood conditions, unusually high demand from higher temperatures and routine scheduled maintenance is challenging the ability of Entergy utilities in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas to meet customer demands for power.

Entergy has already reduced demand by curtailing some industrial and wholesale customers with whom the company has special agreements.

"This is a very unique situation, and we are facing significant challenges," said Bill Mohl, president and chief executive officer of Entergy's Louisiana utilities. "We're working to import purchased power and we've curtailed power sales to those with whom we have agreements, but it's important that our customers are aware that we could face power shortages until these conditions improve."

Damage to Entergy's transmission facilities in Arkansas from several April storms makes operating the undamaged parts of the company's four-state system a challenge until repair and restoration are complete. Massive resources are focused on getting them back into service, but it remains a huge, labor-intensive project.

Entergy is required to meet the National Electric Safety Code for transmission line clearance and the floods are challenging the company's ability to do so. The threat of Mississippi River flooding means some generating plants along the river, as well as some transmission and distribution lines, may be restricted or taken offline.

"Our number one focus is the safety of the public and our employees, and this is the primary reason Entergy may shut down some facilities and/or lines," Mohl said.

In addition, unseasonably high temperatures are creating additional demands on the power grid as customers use more electricity to cool their homes and businesses. This is occurring at a time when some plants are already offline for routine scheduled maintenance in preparation for summer's peak demands.

Any steps customers can take to conserve power at this time will help lessen the risk for power curtailment and the severity of any necessary curtailment. Some ways customers can reduce their energy usage include:

  • Set your thermostat to 78 or the highest comfortable temperature
  • When using window units, shut doors to unused rooms, and close floor or wall registers used for heating.
  • Keep air conditioner filters clean. Aluminum mesh filters should be washed and fiberglass filters should be replaced monthly.
  • Leave storm windows and doors closed when the air conditioner is on.
  • Close shades and drapes on the sunny side of the house during the day to keep light and heat out.
  • Don't block air vents with curtains, shades or furniture.
  • Keep the cool air in your home circulating with ceiling, oscillating or box fans. Circulating air makes you feel cooler and allows you to set your thermostat higher.
  • Use kitchen and bathroom exhaust fans to remove excess heat and humidity caused by cooking, laundering and bathing.

Entergy's Louisiana utility companies serve more than one million customers through the operating companies Entergy Louisiana, LLC and Entergy Gulf States Louisiana, L.L.C. With operations in southern, central and northeastern Louisiana, the companies are part of Entergy Corp's electric system serving 2.7 million customers in Louisiana, Arkansas, Mississippi and Texas.