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Italy's electricity usage hits 2023 record due to heatwave

23 Italian cities on red alert for heatwave on Wednesday.

Electricity consumption in Italy reached peak usage on Tuesday 18 July, hitting a new record for 2023, as people battled the heatwave with air conditioning and electric fans.

Italian grid operator Terna said that consumption hit 57.85 GW at 14.45 on Tuesday afternoon, the highest usage so far this year.

However the surge in electricity usage fell short of Italy's all-time record of 22 July 2015 when consumption reached 60.5 GW.

There are multiple reports of electricity blackouts in Rome, reports news outlet RomaToday, as energy grids come under strain from high air-conditioning usage.

The city's Metro A subway also stopped running early on Wednesday, due to a power cut, with the service resuming by mid-morning.

Italy's health ministry has issued a red alert heatwave warning for 23 major cities on Wednesday as temperatures soar across the country.

The 23 cities with the bollino rosso warning are: Ancona, Bari, Bologna, Brescia, Cagliari, Campobasso, Catania, Civitavecchia, Florence, Frosinone, Latina, Messina, Naples, Palermo, Perugia, Pescara, Rieti, Rome, Turin, Trieste, Venice, Verona and Viterbo.

The red alert indicates emergency conditions with possible negative effects on not just the elderly, sick or very young, but also on healthy and active people.

For full details about the heatwave in Italy see health ministry website.
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