Icicles on a building are a sign of heat loss. (Grand Forks Gazette/Jensen Edwards)

Electricity, natural gas use spiked during cold snap: FortisBC

FortisBC said that natural gas use was 50 per cent higher on Jan. 14, compared to week prior

Icicles grew long off the roofs of many Boundary buildings last week, as residents countered the exceptionally cold weather outside with boosted thermostats.

Natural gas and electricity supplier FortisBC said in a release that across the Southern Interior, electricity use jumped by more than a third on Tuesday, Jan. 14, as compared with the Tuesday prior. On Jan. 14, the recorded low in Grand Forks hit -12 C without windchill. The week before, Grand Forks had a low of 0 C.

FortisBC also said that natural gas use by its customers was 50 per cent higher on Jan. 14, as compared with the Tuesday prior.

According to the utility company, demand for natural gas in the winter has historically been triple that of the summer months, while electricity use surges by approximately 80 per cent.

Heating generally accounts for the most energy use in a home and typically spikes during periods of cold weather as furnaces, baseboard heating and heat pumps cycle more frequently to maintain consistent and comfortable temperatures inside homes. With heating appliances running more often, more energy is used.

Heat loss means money loss as well, and is visible with each drip frozen to the end of an icicle. Draft-proofing and sealing leaks, usually around windows and doors, as well as turning down the heat in unused rooms, have the most potential to save on space heating, FortisBC said.

Customers curious about their energy usage during cold weather can use tools available to them online through their FortisBC accounts.

energy sector

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

B.C. firefighters only responding to most life-threatening calls during COVID-19 pandemic

The directive comes after province spoke with paramedics, fire services, according to top doctor

‘An extra $220 every 90 days’: B.C. patients pay more dispensing fees due to prescription limits

Kelowna woman says it’s outrageous to charge for refills every 30 days

Painting birdhouses in lieu of boredom

Elementary school student finds new hobby for entertainment while away from school

Boundary hospital ‘ready for a surge,’ hoping it never comes

The emergency department director confirmed there were active COVID-19 cases in the Boundary

Grand Forks and Boundary cancellations, changes due to COVID-19

This newspaper’s list of community events, institutions that change or cancel due to pandemic

‘Better days will return’: Queen Elizabeth delivers message amid COVID-19 pandemic

The Queen said crisis reminds her of her first address during World War II in 1940

Emergency aid portal opens Monday, cash could be in bank accounts by end of week: Trudeau

Emergency benefit will provide $2,000 a month for those who have lost their income due to COVID-19

Education, not enforcement: B.C. bylaw officers keeping a watch on physical distancing

A kind word, it turns out, has usually been all people need to hear

COVID-19: Hospitals remain safe for childbirth, say Vancouver Island care providers

North Island Hospital has been asked to share its perinatal COVID-19 response plan

Canadian cadets to mark 103rd anniversary of Vimy Ridge April 9 virtually

Idea of Captain Billie Sheridan in Williams Lake, B.C. who wondered what to do in times of COVID-19

B.C. VIEWS: Pandemic shows need for adequate care home staffing

Seniors in B.C. care homes face challenging times

QUIZ: How much do you know about hockey?

Take this test and find out how well you know Canada’s most popular winter sport

Most Read