heatwave driving peak hourly demand to new records

CAN: B.C. sets new Canadian record for hottest temperature ever recorded

Several unofficial all-time and monthly records have been broken in Western Canada, including the country's warmest in June, as the intense heat wave continues.

As the extreme and potentially life-threatening heat wave continues in Western Canada, new unofficial all-time, monthly, and daily records are being set at a rapid pace.

A phenomenon known as a heat dome, something more common to the U.S. Southwest, is the cause of this extreme heat. It is defined as an area of intense high pressure, beneath which descending air compresses into layers near the surface, warming drastically as it does so.

British Columbia is where the heat is most extreme, with numerous communities opening cooling centers and initiating other measures to warn the public of the extreme temperatures.

Power grids are likely to take significant hits and a lack of rain in the forecast means the fire danger is on the rise. British Columbia's hydro and power authority says it logged a new record for peak hourly demand during the summer on Saturday night as residents try to keep cool during a massive heat wave. Then, BC Hydro set another new record for the highest summer peak hourly demand – the hour customers use the most electricity – on Sunday night breaking the new record set on Saturday.

Preliminary analysis found consumption reached 8,106 megawatts, which was more than 100 megawatts higher than new summer record that was set on Saturday. Monday’s peak hourly demand is expected to be even higher. It may exceed 8,300 megawatts.

BC Hydro issued a statement saying preliminary analysis found demand hit 7,972 megawatts, up from the previous record of 7,897 set in August last year.

The heat is expected to worsen in the coming days.

Visit The Weather Network for a look at the unofficial temperature records that have been set in Western Canada

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