Wisconsin utilities are really pumping out the juice this week to keep all the air conditioners going during the heat wave. Steve Schultz of Madison-based Alliant Energy said supplies of electricity should be fine. “We’re not really near what our historical peak would be, and we do have enough capacity to handle all this extra use,” he said. Madison Gas and Electric set a record for power usage on a Sunday two days ago, and spokesman Steve Kraus expects that to be topped during the week. “Tuesday or Wednesday of this week we should set an all time record for one day usage,” said Kraus. “Supply looks good, and the system to bring power to our area also looks good, so we should have no problem meeting the demand for electricity. That’s always of course with the caveat that something equipmemt-wise doesn’t go wrong, or if a storm came through.”
Alliant spokesman Schultz said, like M-G-and-E, they have a backup plan covering businesses. It’s an interruptible program, and businesses will be notified if they have to be taken off-line for a couple of hours. Schultz doesn’t think that will be likely, thanks in part to the economy. “With the economy the way it’s been the last few years, losing some of our larger industrial customers such as the GM plant in Janesville, we still have the same capacity that we did then, but the load that’s being used on a day-to-day basis is less.” Temperatures are expected in the nineties all week and there’s an excessive heat warning in effect through Thursday night.
John Colbert, WIBA