eMeter wins demand response program award for PEPCO pilot

San Mateo, Calif., March 9, 2010 — Smart grid software firm eMeter’s PowerCentsDC program won the Best Pricing and Demand Response Program award from the Association for Energy Service Professionals.

eMeter designed and managed the PowerCents DC program in partnership with PEPCO and Smart Meter Pilot Program, Inc (SMPPI). The program is the first pilot in the electric utility industry to test the response of residential customers to three distinct dynamic pricing options under one program. 

The PowerCentsDC program involved about 1,000 Pepco customers in the District of Columbia from July 2008 to October 2009. Participating residential customers were given the choice between hourly pricing, critical peak pricing and critical peak rebates and received detailed monthly energy reports and smart thermostats in an effort to help them better understand and manage their energy use.

“We worked with eMeter to design a program with variables that had never been tested together,” said Rick Morgan, DC Public Service Commissioner and SMPPI chairman. “We believe PowerCentsDC is an important step forward as it demonstrates the potential benefits of dynamic pricing for the consumer.”

eMeter partnered with Pepco and SMPPI to deliver, operate, and manage a fully-integrated solution. The solution included smart meters, smart thermostats, and eMeter’s consumer engagement software solution, Energy Engage.

Through the program website, customers had access to relevant, up-to-date information regarding their electricity usage, costs and their carbon footprint.

Sixty-three percent of respondents indicated that the program helped motivate them to use less electricity overall and 68 percent indicated it made them more aware of their environmental impact of their energy usage.

Consumers participating in the PowerCentsDC program reduced summer peak demand in response to the dynamic pricing options. The critical peak pricing group, which allowed customers to be notified the day prior to critical peak price, cut their overall energy consumption between 22 and 34 percent.

In addition to reducing peak demand on critical peak days, participants also saved an average of 8 percent on their electric bills during the testing period.

When polled, more than 82 percent of customers cited “saving money” as their primary motivation for participating in the pilot, with 72 percent claiming the difference between hourly prices was large enough to provide incentives for them to shift electrical usage to cheaper, “off-peak” periods.

The Association of Energy Services Professionals is a member-based association dedicated to improving the delivery and implementation of energy efficiency, energy management and distributed renewable resources. AESP provides professional development programs, a network of energy practitioners, and promotes the transfer of knowledge and experience.

 

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