(WBRC) - The Tennessee Valley Authority is asking local utility companies, including 15 in Alabama, to tell their customers about a voluntary request to conserve power.
On New Year's Day, TVA set a holiday record for peak demand at 28,891 megawatts. Tuesday morning's peak demand was 31,740 megawatts.
TVA supplies power to systems in Bessemer, Tarrant and Cullman, as well as much of Northern Alabama.
Customers conserving power would help maintain a margin of available power in case something should happen like a large nuclear or coal unit going offline, according to TVA.
Other systems are also noticing an increased demand as cold air grips much of the area, but stop short of asking users to conserve.
In a statement from Spire Energy, spokesman Aaron Schmidt noted, "So far, this winter has been colder than the winter of 2014 and as expected, there has been an increase in natural gas usage based on the colder temperatures. However, we have not experienced a shortage of supply and we do not anticipate one."
Spire, formerly Alagasco, and Alabama Power both offered tips for customers to help conserve and save money on their bills.
"Anytime you can lower the thermostat below 68 degrees, you can save as much as 10 percent in energy cost for each degree," says Alabama Power spokesman Michael Sznajderman.
He encourages their 1.4 million customers to look for opportunities to save power particularly in the morning hours when consumption is typically at its highest during the winter months.
Alabama Power's record for winter-peak energy use dates back to January 2015.
Tuesday morning's energy load was about 7 percent below that historic peak, but about 4 percent higher than the average of our winter peaks over the past five years, according to Sznajderman.
For Alabama Power's tips on the best ways to save energy, click here.
For a list of tips from Spire Energy, click here.