Kissimmee residents break all-time electricity records twice this week due to heat wave

The sun sits over downtown Kissimmee. Electricity usage records were broken twice by Kissimmee Utility Authority customers this week.

Several electric utilities in Florida, including Kissimmee Utility Authority and Orlando Utilities Commission, are reporting record-high levels of electricity sales so far this summer,

The cities that purchase wholesale power from FMPA are located statewide, including Bushnell, Clewiston, Fort Meade, Fort Pierce, Green Cove Springs, Havana, Jacksonville Beach, Key West, Kissimmee, Leesburg, Newberry, Ocala and Starke.

Residents of Kissimmee set a new all-time consecutive records for electricity use.

Kissimmee Utility Authority recorded an instantaneous system peak of 398.1 megawatts (MW) at 4:40 p.m. Tuesday, eclipsing Monday’s record of 388.8 MW.

Above-normal temperatures combined with high humidity created a heat index in Kissimmee of 107 degrees Tuesday (as reported by Kissimmee Gateway Airport), forcing air conditioners to work overtime.

All four generating units at the utility’s Cane Island power plant were in operation Tuesday to meet the increased demand.

 The state statistics show:

 Record peak demand: The 13 cities set a record-high electric demand on June 25, at 5 p.m. of 1,295 megawatts, nearly 1 percent higher than the previous record of 1,283 megawatts set in Summer 2005 for the same 13 cities.

 Growing electric sales: FMPA’s cumulative electricity sales to the 13 cities are on pace to grow 3 percent this year compared to the year-ago period. At this pace, electricity sales for the year could reach the highest annual total for the 13 cities.

 Sufficient power generation: FMPA reports that its electric generating units are operating well, so it has sufficient power generating capability to meet the record electricity usage.

Florida is seeing population growth of approximately 1.2 percent, and some FMPA cities are growing faster than the state average. Even as people install more energy efficient appliances and lighting, electric sales are growing due to the number of new accounts, in addition to being influenced by the weather.

 Electricity conservation suggestions

Recognizing the high electric usage, customers may want to consider energy-saving measures:

 • Set the thermostat on the highest comfortable setting (78-80 degrees suggested). Raising the temperature will reduce cooling costs.

• Change or clean air conditioner filters monthly. Dirty filters can increase operating costs.

• Use ceiling and portable fans to keep air moving.

• Close blinds, drapes and shades during the hottest part of the day to minimize the sun’s rays from heating the residence.