A peak alert is not a shortage of electricity; it simply means that demand on our electric system is high. Peak Alerts are issued in an effort to reduce our peak energy demand, helping to create lower electric rates for our customers. As a non-profit and community-owned utility, the rates we charge residents and businesses are base entirely on our cost of doing business. As a result, when our costs for energy go up, so must our customers'.

Peak alerts are only issued when absolutely necessary June through September but the number of alerts can vary as much as Minnesota weather. Extreme weather often triggers an alert, and extreme heat and humidity are the culprits.


It's easy to be a hero. ENERGY HERO is a voluntary program that gives our customers the opportunity to participate in reducing our peak energy demand. We inform ENERGY HEROES when we are approaching a peak alert by sending notices requesting them to limit their energy consumption.

You can help your community control peak alerts by participating in our ENERGY HERO program. When you are an ENERGY HERO, you receive notices when we are experiencing high usage. There are so many easy ways you can help:

Turn off non-essential lighting Turn off restroom and closet lighting

Turn off task lighting at desk Turn off unnecessary fans

Turn off radios Turn off televisions

Turn up AC Thermostat 2+ degrees Close doors to unconditioned spaces

Turn off any computers or monitors not in use


It's easy to become an ENERGY HERO. Just send an email to peakalert@austinutilities.com and type "Add me to your list" in the subject line.


It's easy to become an ENERGY HERO. Just complete the participation form using the information off your utility bill.

Recognition includes -
  • Participation Decal to display in business window
  • Name listed on utility website
  • Name listed in annual thank you in our utility newsletter
  • Signage to let your customers know when you are participating in a Peak Alert


In addition to Peak Alert notification through our Energy Hero program, Austin Utilities installs load control devices on residential central air conditioning units. Load control devices cycle the condenser to your air conditioner off for a portion of each hour while still leaving the fan running. These smart devices know when and how long to control your AC load without disrupting your comfort more than 2 degrees.