GE aims to reduce electricity demand with smart grid-ready products

Washington, D.C., July 23, 2009 – GE will develop and manufacture smart grid-enabled appliances meant to shave energy peaks for utility companies and save consumers money.

President and CEO James Campbell discussed provisions of the American Clean Energy and Security Act that will continue the progress in smart grid development, especially the recognition that appliances will play an essential role in realizing the full potential of the smart grid.

Integrating appliances into the smart grid is critical because residential housing consumes 37 percent of the electricity produced in the U.S. Appliances, Lighting and HVAC represent 82 percent of electricity consumed in the home.

According to a recent Federal Energy Regulatory Commission report, residential demand response programs can affect the largest potential reduction in U.S. peak demand. This avoided demand is equivalent to the generation capacity of 108 coal plants over a ten-year period.

The American Clean Energy and Security Act as passed by the House will provide assistance through the Best in Class Appliances Deployment Program. This program will provide incentives to appliance manufacturers to develop and manufacture these new demand response products.

As demand response appliances interact with the smart grid they have the ability to temporarily reduce power or delay some normal operations without interfering with the consumer’s daily needs because the consumer can override any of the appliance’s actions.

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