Industrial and oil refining cities in southern China are urging firms and citizens to curb electricity, while Hainan province called for less power usage at peak times, as grids become more stressed due to persistent searing hot weather.
Southern China has been beleaguered by a combination of sizzling hot temperatures and heavy rainfalls in recent weeks, with power loads in several cities approaching historic highs due to soaring demand for air-conditioning.
The growth rate of power consumption in Maoming city in southern Guangdong province was as high as 8.01% in the January to May period, and its residential electricity consumption increased by 27.41% in May from a year earlier, the city government said in a statement on Monday.
The oil refinery city, whose power load broke records three times as of Monday, asked industrial firms to actively reduce power consumption and strengthen power-saving technology transformation.
It also suggested that state-owned firms, residents and commercial venues set cooling temperatures to no less than 26 degrees Celsius, according to the statement.
Jiangmen, another industrial city in Guangdong, is also proposing to cut unnecessary power usage amid the power consumption peak.
Meanwhile, in Hainan province, government officials released a plan calling for less power use during peak times as supply usage increases in coming weeks. Officials said from January to April electricity consumption rose by 11.8% year-on-year.
The power load in Hainan also climbed above 7 million kW for the first time in early June.
Earlier this month, the power load in key manufacturing hubs in the south including Guangdong rose to historic highs. China Southern Power Grid, one of the country's two grid operators, saw output hit 222 million kW, approaching historical highs.
China was hit by a record-breaking heat wave and drought last year, with large-scale power shortages that prompted regions like Yunan to ration power usage for aluminium producers.
In the coming days, China's northern regions are expected to see sweltering weather, state media has reported China's meteorological authority as saying.