To give you non-Montrealers an idea of how cold it is, below is an email we received from McGill's VP of University Services. Apparently I should've thought twice about cranking my heater this afternoon. Given the extreme lack of insulation in this building, if we lose power we're in hotttt water...only not because there won't be any left.
With Quebec in the grip of an extreme cold snap, Hydro-Québec has reported that the province broke a record for energy consumption Wednesday morning when the level hit 38,910 megawatts.
The Hydro-Québec website says the utility is expecting to set another record for electricity consumption by this time tomorrow with temperatures expected to remain frigid.
The utility has asked everyone – individual consumers and organizations like McGill – to reduce their consumption of electricity as much as possible, especially during peak hours between 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. in the evening and 6 a.m. and 10 a.m. in the morning."
Here are the most effective ways to reduce consumption at home and at McGill:
- Turn off individual space heaters.
- Turn off lighting in offices and meeting rooms (when not in use).
- Lower the thermostat temperature by a degree or two in all rooms, especially those that are unused.
- Postpone using major appliances (especially dryers and dishwashers) by a few hours. I wish we had a dishwasher to turn off...
- Limit the use of hot water as much as possible.