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Lockdowns Begin Taking a Toll on U.S. Electricity Markets (1)

March 19, 2020, 3:50 PM

The mass shutdown of schools and businesses over the coronavirus is starting to take a bite from electricity demand in the biggest U.S. power markets.

Peak demand on the grid stretching from New Jersey to Illinois came in 5% lower than forecast Monday, partly because of shuttered schools and offices, according to grid operator PJM Interconnection LLC.

“We saw some reduction that day and will continue to consider coronavirus-inspired changes in human behavior in the load forecast,” PJM spokesman Jeffrey Shields said in an email.

It’s apt to be only the beginning. Power demand is already falling in ...

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