Qlders urged to limit power use amid warnings of mass blackouts

Queenslanders are being urged to limit their power usage tonight with the state facing the threat of blackouts tonight.

The state is in the grip of a major supply shortage off the back of a surge in wholesale electricity prices that forced the regulator to impose a price cap.

The Australian Energy Market Operator has warned that demand will likely outstrip supply between 5pm and 8.30pm tonight.


Load shedding is likely to be needed with AEMO forecasting a shortage of 1454MW, roughly the usual supply for all of Brisbane.

A similar supply shortage is forecast for tomorrow morning between 7am and 8am.

“There is an unusual combination of unexpected generator outages plus cool Winter temperatures and high demand for electricity. Gas supplies are sufficient however very high gas prices means AEMO has already triggered its market generation response mechanisms,” Powerlink Chief Executive Paul Simshauser said.

Households are being urged to manage their electricity usage by limiting the number of rooms being heated by air-conditioners, turning off household appliances in standby mode and turning off pool pumps and second fridges.

Businesses are urged to consider how much lighting is used, turn off water heating systems and urns and turning off advertising lighting and any unnecessary exterior lighting.

“By carefully managing electricity use at home and in your workplace, the community can help ensure that power system security is maintained in Queensland,” Mr Simshauser said.

“Community safety and wellbeing is important so only manage energy consumption if it is safe to do so,” Mr Simshauser said.