French power grid operator calls on users to cut energy consumption on Monday

French power grid operator RTE said there could be a 'tense' situation between the supply of power and user demand for electricity in France on Monday as a result of the colder temperatures currently affecting much of Europe.

An image of an electricity pylon in France
An image of an electricity pylon installed by RTE (Electricity Transmission Network) near the town of Flers in Escrebieux, northern France. DENIS CHARLET / AFP

RTE asked companies and local authorities to cut their energy usage on Monday morning, particularly between 7 and 10am.

It also called on individuals to use appliances, such as dishwashers or washing machines, at the weekend, rather than on Monday, if possible.

READ ALSO: IN PICTURES: Snow falls across France

And it recommended other energy-saving actions, too, such as turning off unnecessary lighting, turning down the thermostat if you’re going to be out or completely unplugging appliances from at night.

RTE said that electricity consumption could reach 73,000 MW at around 9am on Monday while supply will only be around 65,000 MW. However, France can import up to 11,000 MW to make up any shortfall.

The operator does not expect any power cuts on Monday, it said.

Temperatures have plummeted across France in recent days with heavy snowfall and ice in many areas and sub-zero levels forecast for several regions on Monday morning, according to Météo France.




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UPDATE: Stormy weather alerts issued in France

France's meteorological service has issued orange alerts for storms in 21 départements urging the population to be vigilant.

UPDATE: Stormy weather alerts issued in France

Météo France has warned that much of the country will experience storms on Sunday. 

21 départements have been issued orange weather warnings. 

They include Landes, Gironde, Lot, Lot-et-Garonne, Dordogne, Charente, Charente-Maritime, Vienne, Haute-Vienne, Corrèze, Creuse, Cantal, Puy-de-Dôme, Rhône, Allier, Cher, Indre, Indre-et-Loire, Deux-Sèvres, Haute-Loire and Loire.

People living or visiting these areas are urged to “be very vigilant”. 

Forecasters predict hail and strong winds of up to 110km/h in some areas. Périgord, Limousin, Quercy and areas to the east of Poitou and Charentes are most likely to be battered by strong gusts. 

This weather is set to last until about 3AM on Monday. 

The storms will coincide with temperatures surpassing 30 degrees across much of the southern half of the country.

Last weekend, violent thunder storms left thousands of homes without electricity in northwestern France.