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Demand Destruction

This May, through noon May 19, the highest hourly demand for electricity in the continental U.S. was 470.8 thousand megawatt-hours. That highest hourly demand came in hour nineteen Eastern Time on the fourth of May, the same day that the highest daily demand took place this month, at 9.6 million megawatt-hours.

Notably, this highest hourly demand was 7.6 percent less than the highest hourly demand during the same time period of last May, in 2019. And the highest daily demand was 8.3 percent less this May as compared to last May.

We can further demonstrate the impact of the coronavirus crisis on electricity demand in this way. During the same period in May of last year, demand exceeded this May’s highest hourly demand at least once on twelve of the nineteen days.