Melbourne could be forced to use its back-up energy reserves today as the power grid is pushed to its limits by sweltering conditions.

The Australian Energy Marketing Operator last night warned of possible ‘load shedding’ – cuts to power of both businesses and households – of up to 40 megawatts in both Victoria and South Australia.

Due to failures at the Latrobe Valley coal power stations putting pressure on the wider market, there may not be enough power to go around.

Surging temperatures mean areas around Victoria could be hit with consecutive 40 degree days.

Melbourne is in store for one of its hottest nights ever tonight, with the Bureau tipping it won’t drop below 29C overnight.

KIIS 1011 Melbourne