Seasonal temperatures replacing heat wave to cut energy demand

July 17, 2013 04:52 AM

Temperatures in the 90s across the Midwest and U.S. East Coast, including Chicago and New York, will give way to more seasonal readings and a drop in energy demand by next week.

Temperatures will be near normal levels across the eastern U.S. and Canada from July 22 to 31, said Matt Rogers, president of Commodity Weather Group LLC in Bethesda, Maryland. The western U.S. will likely be warmer than normal, according to his 6- to 15-day forecast.

“The powerful heat ridging over the Midwest and East is in its final three days before the pattern collapses back to a more variable flow for the final part of July,” Rogers said. “The latest models are mixed on details, but none of them show any major heat repeats through the 6-15 day period.”

Seasonal temperatures in the large cities of the eastern U.S. and Canada will likely drop energy consumption, Rogers said. Electricity demand has increased this week as temperatures reached into the 90s and humidity levels soared along the East Coast, Midwest and southern Canada.

Peak power demand yesterday by customers of Consolidated Edison Inc.’s utility in New York City was 12,211 megawatts, 2 percent lower than a day earlier, Christopher Olert, a spokesman, said today in a telephone interview.

The utility forecast today’s peak consumption will be 12,800 megawatts, 5% more than yesterday and enough for 10.2 million homes on an average day, he said.

New York

The high temperature in New York’s Central Park was 94 degrees Fahrenheit (34 Celsius) yesterday and is expected to reach that mark again today, which would be the fourth consecutive day in which readings reached at least 90 degrees, according to the National Weather Service.

Boston may rise to 91 today; Chicago 82; Washington 96; Philadelphia 97 and Cincinnati 94, according to the Weather Service. Toronto may rise near 90 today while Ottawa and Montreal surpass that mark, according to Environment Canada.

As the heat in the U.S. spreads westward into the Midwest, heat advisories have been issued in parts of 18 states from Minnesota to New Hampshire, according to the Weather Service.

In Canada, high heat and humidity warnings, along with severe thunderstorm watches have been posted for southern Quebec including Montreal, according to Environment Canada.

Cold Front

Temperatures are expected to drop this weekend in the eastern U.S. when a cold front moves through the area, potentially sparking severe thunderstorms, according to the U.S. Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Oklahoma.

“Vigorous and severe thunderstorms can be expected as lift along the frontal zone acts on very warm and moist air from Ohio to New England during the day Saturday,” Greg Carbin, warning coordination meteorologist at the center, said in a forecast. “Strengthening wind fields will support bands of lines of storms spreading east-southeastward with damaging winds being the primary severe weather hazard.”

By July 22, the high temperature is expected to be 83 in New York; 78 in Boston; 83 in Chicago and 86 in Washington, according to MDA Weather Services in Gaithersburg, Maryland.

The normal average temperature for July 22 is 78 in New York; 74 in Boston; 79 in Philadelphia; 80 in Washington and 74 in Chicago, according to MDA.

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