SAN DIEGO — The arctic temperatures and power outages accompanying the record winter storm in Texas have even begun impacting San Diego residents, with vaccine appointments disrupted and San Diego Gas & Electric asking customers to conserve energy.
SDG&E and other utility companies are urging residents to be mindful of their gas and electricity usage to help reduce pressure on the national electric grid. Demand has been too much for infrastructure to handle, leading to blackouts in areas where people need heat more than ever.
The worst U.S. power outages were in Texas, affecting more than 2 million homes and businesses.
“It’s a good time to help others in the central US facing severe weather conditions,” California Independent System Operator said in a statement. “Some areas of Texas are interconnected to other grids, so conserving energy in California frees up supplies that could potentially be exported to regions battered by winter storms.”
SDG&E expects the extreme temperatures in Texas to last through much of this week.
“It’s very sad and it’s terrible for the people in Texas that you know they’ve lost power,” said Joyce Lane, who is part of the environmental organization San Diego 350. “People are freezing. But I think it’s a sign things are changing. We need to recognize that climate change is here now.”
For climate change activists like Joyce Lane, drastic weather like this is a call to action.
“People are unprepared,” says Lane. “Our society is unprepared for what’s happening.”
“Fossil fuel companies including San Diego Gas and Electric need to be willing to move forward,” Lane told FOX 5. “We need to getting more renewable energy. We need to be doing everything we can to stop climate change.”