Duke customers set energy-use record

bhenderson@charlotteobserver.comJanuary 31, 2014 

Heat pumps were humming Thursday as customers of Duke Energy Carolinas used an all-time record amount of electricity.

The 20,799 megawatt-hours used in the hour that ended at 8 a.m. beat the previous mark of 20,628 MWh set on Aug. 8, 2007.

Thursday’s low temperature in Charlotte was 5 degrees, 25 degrees below normal.

That the all-time record would be set in winter – electricity use typically peaks in summer – underscores what a brisk January it was.

Heating degree days, a measure that links cold weather to energy demand, were 18 percent higher in Charlotte than long-term normals for the month through Thursday. They were 49 percent higher than last January.

The National Weather Service expects local temperatures to moderate, with no overnight lows below 26 degrees and highs rising into the 50s through next Thursday.

Henderson: 704-358-5051; Twitter: @bhender

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