ST. LOUIS – With most of the St. Louis region experiencing dangerous heat, there is a high energy demand across the region. Ameren is encouraging Missouri and Illinois customers to do what they can to conserve energy.

Shawn Schukar, the chairman and president of Ameren Transmission Company of Illinois, says they currently have enough energy available to cover their customers’ energy needs, but by taking proactive steps now, we can help our neighbors and communities across Missouri and Illinois stay safe in this dangerous heat.

In a memo sent Thursday, Ameren is urging customers to take steps to use energy conservatively and efficiently. Ameren is hoping to lessen the strain on the grid and ensure safe and reliable service as the summer winds down.

A slight cooldown is expected Friday, though high temperatures could still peak in the 90s.

Ameren is asking customers to keep the following considerations in mind:

  • Raise the temperature on your thermostat by a few degrees when possible.
  • Use curtains and blinds to block out direct sunlight, especially during the hottest part of the afternoon.
  • Defer appliance usage by waiting to run your dishwasher, washing machine or any high-energy appliances until the evening hours.

Obeid Khan of Maryland Heights says he has been taking extra steps to try to keep his home cool.

“I do close the blinds when the sun come around because it makes it hot in the house and air has to work. Always try to keep it where it’s not having to struggle in this heat, but it seems like they’re running all day long,” Khan said.

Ameren says closing blinds and curtains can help us use energy more efficiently, as blocking out direct sunlight can reduce the heat inside by 33%.

“I like for it to be as efficient as it can, so it can shut off so that things in the world are more efficient but also my pocketbook’s a little fuller,” Khan said.

Ameren is also asking for their customers to consider raising the temperature on their thermostat a few degrees. But that can be difficult especially for those who have been working in the dangerous conditions.

“I’d be lying if I said I didn’t crank my AC up when I get home,” said Ben Verseman, a landscaper who’s been out working in the dangerous heat all day. “I get home I throw my boots off and sit in the AC all night.”

And lastly, wait to run the dishwasher, washing machine, and other high-energy appliances until after 10 p.m.

“I’ve been using everything whenever I need. Anything like the dishwasher or the washer and dryer and stuff. But I always plan to save some energy,” said Seshu Velagapudi, a software engineer who works in Maryland Heights.

And while many customers may not be taking these precautions yet, those we spoke with today are willing to make some changes.

“Definitely willing to do that. I mean that’s a simple thing,” Velagapudi said.