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Eastern Cold Snap Prompts Warning for Californians to Conserve Power

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A shortage of natural gas triggered by the extreme cold weather across the nation prompted California’s power grid operator to issue a statewide flex alert Thursday, officials said.

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Morning commuters in New York bundle up.                (Credit: Getty Images)

The cold snap in the rest of the country and Canada has affected fuel supplies to Southern California power plants and reduced electricity generation, according to a statement from Cal ISO.

The agency is asking residents to reduce their energy use between 1 p.m. and 10 p.m. Thursday. Though the shortage only affects Southern California power plants, statewide conservation will free up electricity and gas supplies for the region, the agency said.

 Flex alerts are rare in the winter, and are typically issued in the summer when demand for power is high, said Stephanie McCorkle, director of communications for California ISO.

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