PGE customer actions helped service reliability during record-breaking heat wave

On Wednesday, PGE customers set a record for energy demand at 4,498 MW

Aug. 17, 2023

PORTLAND, Ore. (Aug. 17, 2023) — Portland General Electric thanks customers for their collective actions to reduce energy use during this week’s record-setting heat wave. Coupled with PGE’s own year-round system upgrades and preparedness efforts, customer actions helped with electrical service reliability.

PGE employees also worked diligently on several efforts to address or prevent potential heat-related issues, including:

  • Added extra cooling systems to help keep essential distribution equipment from overheating.

  • Assigned extra crews for the week to quickly and effectively respond to any outages.

  • Activated demand response programs.

  • Encouraged commercial and industrial customers to reduce electricity use.

Advancements in technologies and electrification means today’s electric system is a two-way street. This creates the opportunity for customers to have a significant impact by reducing their energy use during times of peak demand. Their actions this week reduced power demand by about 90 megawatts (MW) during peak hours on the hottest day – Monday (August 14) – and by an initial 96 MW followed by a second 16 MW drop on Tuesday (August 15). These results helped PGE maintain reliable power throughout the week.

PGE’s demand response programs – Peak Time Rebates, Smart Thermostat, and Time of Day, reward customers for reducing their energy use during times of peak demand. Extreme temperatures create an increased demand for electricity, especially during the evening when people typically return home from work, turn up the air conditioner, and run dishwashers and other appliances. Reducing energy use during these times alleviates stress on the grid and PGE equipment, helping the company continue to provide reliable power to customers throughout the day.

Just over 20 percent of PGE residential customers are enrolled in these energy-and money-saving programs. As the Pacific Northwest continues to see recording-breaking summer and winter weather, PGE encourages customers to enroll. More participation helps reduce strain on the grid and increases service reliability for all during extreme weather events.


About Portland General Electric Company
Portland General Electric (NYSE: POR) is a fully integrated energy company that generates, transmits and distributes electricity to over 900,000 customers in 51 cities across the state of Oregon. For more than 130 years, Portland General Electric (PGE) has powered the advancement of society, delivering safe, affordable, reliable and increasingly clean energy. To deliver on its strategy and meet state targets, PGE and its approximately 3,000 employees committed to partnering with stakeholders to achieve at least an 80% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions from power served to customers by 2030 and 100% reduction by 2040. PGE customers set the standard for prioritizing clean energy with the No. 1 voluntary renewable energy program in the country. Additionally, for the fifth year in a row, PGE was recognized by the Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index which highlights companies committed to creating a more equal and inclusive workplace. As a reflection of the company's commitment to the community it serves, in 2022, PGE employees, retirees and the PGE Foundation donated nearly $5.5 million and volunteered more than 18,000 hours with more than 400 nonprofits across Oregon. For more information visit

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