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We Energies asks customers to lower thermostats to 60

In an unprecedented move late Friday, We Energies asked customers to reduce natural gas use by lowering thermostats to 60-62 degrees. “This request comes after one of the interstate pipeline suppliers who provides natural gas to We Energies experienced a significant equipment failure — reducing the amount of fuel they normally send by 30%,” a statement posted to the company’s website and social media accounts said.We Energies spokesman Brendan Conway identified the supplier as Guardian Pipeline, a subsidiary of Oklahoma based ONEOK.”Earlier , Guardian experienced two valve malfunctions at its Sycamore compressor station in DeKalb County, Illinois, which resulted in reduced capacity on our system,” ONEOK spokesman Brad Borror said in an emailed statement late Friday evening.”Our crews are focused on resolving the issue and restoring capacity in a timely manner. One valve has been restored to service, and we continue working on the second,” Borror added.Conway said We Energies officials would reassess the situation on Saturday.The company’s unusual request for lowered thermostats across the state comes as Wisconsinites are braving one of the coldest nights of the year. Two days before Christmas, homes likely have more people than usual as families gather for the holidays.”We understand no one wants to turn down a thermostat when it’s really cold,” Conway said in a virtual interview, “But if we get people to turn down to 60-62 degrees, throw on an extra sweatshirt, an extra blanket, it’s going to be cool but not dangerously cold and we’ll hopefully be able to get the pipeline at full speed and get everything up and running as quickly as possible. “Online, customers blasted the company for its request. “During these temperatures? That’s nuts,” one Twitter user replied.”Not with what I just paid on my last bill,” another user quipped.Many flat out rebuffed the ask.”Cranking it to 75, thanks for jacking my rates!!!,” one person wrote, referring to the Public Service Commission’s approval this month of a 10.9% rate hike for We Energies’ residential customers. The increase is expected to take effect in January.If customers complied with the request, the We Energies website said it would “avoid a significant natural gas outage.””The real issue becomes turning it back on again. It’s not like flipping on a switch; it’s not like that. You literally have to go to every home; turn their meter on, go inside their home; relight their pilot light, check that all of their natural gas appliances are working properly and safely and it takes some time,” Conway added.The disclosure of the issue Friday came one day after Governor Tony Evers signed an executive order declaring an energy emergency across the state. “@GovEvers has been briefed by the Public Service Commission and Wisconsin Emergency Management regarding the situation with We Energies,” a spokesperson tweeted, “Our office will remain in close contact with local, state, and federal partners as we continue to closely monitor this situation.”

In an unprecedented move late Friday, We Energies asked customers to reduce natural gas use by lowering thermostats to 60-62 degrees.

“This request comes after one of the interstate pipeline suppliers who provides natural gas to We Energies experienced a significant equipment failure — reducing the amount of fuel they normally send by 30%,” a statement posted to the company’s website and social media accounts said.

We Energies spokesman Brendan Conway identified the supplier as Guardian Pipeline, a subsidiary of Oklahoma based ONEOK.

“Earlier [Friday], Guardian experienced two valve malfunctions at its Sycamore compressor station in DeKalb County, Illinois, which resulted in reduced capacity on our system,” ONEOK spokesman Brad Borror said in an emailed statement late Friday evening.

“Our crews are focused on resolving the issue and restoring capacity in a timely manner. One valve has been restored to service, and we continue working on the second,” Borror added.

Conway said We Energies officials would reassess the situation on Saturday.

The company’s unusual request for lowered thermostats across the state comes as Wisconsinites are braving one of the coldest nights of the year. Two days before Christmas, homes likely have more people than usual as families gather for the holidays.

“We understand no one wants to turn down a thermostat when it’s really cold,” Conway said in a virtual interview, “But if we get people to turn down to 60-62 degrees, throw on an extra sweatshirt, an extra blanket, it’s going to be cool but not dangerously cold and we’ll hopefully be able to get the pipeline at full speed and get everything up and running as quickly as possible. “

This content is imported from Twitter.
You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, at their web site.

Online, customers blasted the company for its request.

“During these temperatures? That’s nuts,” one Twitter user replied.

“Not with what I just paid on my last bill,” another user quipped.

This content is imported from Twitter.
You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, at their web site.

Many flat out rebuffed the ask.

“Cranking it to 75, thanks for jacking my rates!!!,” one person wrote, referring to the Public Service Commission’s approval this month of a 10.9% rate hike for We Energies’ residential customers. The increase is expected to take effect in January.

If customers complied with the request, the We Energies website said it would “avoid a significant natural gas outage.”

“The real issue becomes turning it back on again. It’s not like flipping on a switch; it’s not like that. You literally have to go to every home; turn their meter on, go inside their home; relight their pilot light, check that all of their natural gas appliances are working properly and safely and it takes some time,” Conway added.

The disclosure of the issue Friday came one day after Governor Tony Evers signed an executive order declaring an energy emergency across the state.

This content is imported from Twitter.
You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, at their web site.

@GovEvers has been briefed by the Public Service Commission and Wisconsin Emergency Management regarding the situation with We Energies,” a spokesperson tweeted, “Our office will remain in close contact with local, state, and federal partners as we continue to closely monitor this situation.”

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