BATON ROUGE – It’s the first day of summer, and everyone is feeling the burn. The scorching heat is prompting Entergy to make a shocking estimate.
“We’re predicting the highest energy usage by our customers in company history,” said David Freese, spokesperson for Entergy.
Freese says that estimate goes for the Entergy system as a whole. Not just Louisiana, but Arkansas, Texas and Mississippi customers could all be affected.
It means bills could soar along with the thermometer.
“There are several things that customers cannot control and high natural gas prices are among them, as well as the storm recovery cost. However, one thing customers can control is their usage,” said Freese.
Data from DEMCO shows usage is up slightly this year. From May 2021 to May 2022, usage has increased by about 7%. Entergy did not provide any data within the requested time frame.
With little relief from the heat in the forecast, the cruel irony is that raising your thermostat could lower your bill. Entergy recommends customers keep the thermostat on 78 degrees.
“Every degree below 78 could add 3% to your bill. So if you go down to 75 you’ve already added 9% to your bill,” said Freese.
Entergy says that despite the increased demand, there is no indication of strain on the power grid that could lead to outages at this time and the company will notify customers if this changes.