New regulation requires Ontario utilities to adopt ‘Green Button’

Credit Energy.gov https://www.energy.gov/data/green-button

The North American Energy Standards Board (NAESB) announced that on November 1, 2021, a new regulation will come into effect that directs Ontario energy providers to implement two programs: Green Button Download My Data (DMD) and Green Button Connect My Data (CMD) – and certify the implementations through the Green Button Alliance by November 1, 2023. The regulation is part of Ontario’s Electricity Act, 1998, section 25.35.8: Energy Data, Regulation 633/21: Energy Data.

Beginning as a 2011 White House call-to-action, the Green Button Initiative has become an industry-led effort that provides energy customers with easy access to their energy usage information via a “green button” on the websites of electric utilities.  The NAESB ESPI (Energy Services Provider Interface) Standard serves as the basis of the Green Button Initiative, as it defines a communication protocol for the exchange of retail customer energy usage information. 

Since its adoption by NAESB in September of 2011, the goal of the standard has been to support the development of products that allow consumers to better understand their usage information and to make informed decisions regarding energy consumption.  NAESB published the most recent version of the NAESB ESPI Standard on January of 2020 as part of Version 3.3 of the NAESB Retail Markets Quadrant Model Business Practices.

Cade Burks, Vice Chair of the NAESB Board of Directors and Chairman and Founder of Big Data Energy Services said, “Any time consumers, demand response providers, and energy managers are supplied with information, they are in a better position to make decisions that directly benefit them. Big Data Energy is thrilled to be part of this effort. It is great to see the Ministry of Energy and NAESB working together to give more power to the consumer by way of supplying useful data at the click of a button.”

In 2012, the Green Button was introduced to Ontario with the support of the Ministry of Energy which committed to expanding the use of Green Button through the NAESB ESPI Standard.  Today, more than half of Ontario-based consumers, totaling over 3 million residences and businesses have access to their energy usage information.

Together, the two ESPI schema-based programs, Green Button CMD and DMD, ensure customers have access to their energy usage data, along with the ability to easily share that information with authorized third-parties, leading to informed energy usage and management.  While Green Button DMD provides utility customers with the ability to easily download their energy usage data, Green Button CMD provides a standardized way for the customer to automate the transfer of the data to authorized third parties.

NAESB has coordinated to support the efforts of the Green Button Alliance (GBA), a non-profit organization formed to foster the development, compliance, and global adoption of compliant Green Button implementations.  Through the Green Button Testing and Certification Program, the GBA assures utilities they have implemented the standard correctly.

Author

  • The Clarion Energy Content Team is made up of editors from various publications, including POWERGRID International, Power Engineering, Renewable Energy World, Hydro Review, Smart Energy International, and Power Engineering International. Contact the content lead for this publication at Jennifer.Runyon@ClarionEvents.com.

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The Clarion Energy Content Team is made up of editors from various publications, including POWERGRID International, Power Engineering, Renewable Energy World, Hydro Review, Smart Energy International, and Power Engineering International. Contact the content lead for this publication at Jennifer.Runyon@ClarionEvents.com.

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