SACRAMENTO (KCBS) – The California Independent System Operator has issued a statewide Flex Alert for Thursday, asking people to voluntary conserve power.

CAISO said due to a shortage of natural gas, triggered by the extremely cold weather across much of the United State and Canada, fuel supplies to Southern California power plants are being impacted, forcing the reduction of energy generation.

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Customers in both Northern and Southern California are being asked to reduce their energy use until 10:00 p.m. on Thursday, February 6.

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The natural gas shortage is only impacting Southern California power plants, but officials said statewide electricity and gas conservation will help free up both electricity and gas supplies in that region.

Among the conservation tips from state officials – turning off unneeded lights, putting off the use of large appliances, turning up or turning off the heater, setting pool pumps for overnight and conserving on water use.

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Flex Alerts are usually reserved for the summer months, during the hot weather.