PGE and AutoGrid Pricing and Demand Response Project Recognized by Peak Load Management Alliance’s Award

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Media Contact: Ed Thomas; Executive Director, PLMA; (707) 652-5333;

PLMA Recognizes Leading Electric Utility Industry Demand Response Initiatives

Nashville, Tennessee – April 4, 2017 – PLMA (Peak Load Management Alliance) announced eight winners of its 14th Annual PLMA Awards. The Awards were presented during the 35th PLMA Conference in Nashville, Tennessee. Those recognized as the best demand response programs, initiatives and achievements from calendar year 2016 are:

Program Pacesetters

  • AEP Indiana Michigan Power Company’s Demand Response Service Emergency Program
  • Central Hudson Gas & Electric’s Peak Perks Program
  • City of New York’s Municipal Demand Response Program
  • Portland General Electric and AutoGrid for Pricing and Peak Time Rebate Program
  • Target Corporation’s Demand Side Energy Program

Thought Leaders

  • KCP&L and Nest for the KCP&L Thermostat Program
  • Alectra Utilities, Advantage Power Pricing
  • Brett Feldman, Navigant Research

The 14th PLMA Awards recognize industry leaders who created, during calendar year 2016, innovative ideas, methods, programs and technologies that manage end use loads to meet peak load needs, mitigate price risks and support successful grid integration of distributed generation assets. Over the past 13 years, PLMA has presented over 60 awards to recipients who have included utilities, product/service providers, end-users, and individuals responsible for demand response efforts targeted to the residential, commercial, industrial and agricultural customer markets.

PLMA (Peak Load Management Alliance) is a non-profit organization founded in 1999 as the Voice of Demand Response Practitioners. PLMA’s over 130 member organizations share expertise to educate each other and explore innovative approaches to demand response programs, price and rate response, regional regulatory issues, and technologies as the energy markets evolve represent a broad range of energy professionals. Learn more at

About the Winners – Program Pacesetters

AEP Indiana Michigan Power Company’s Demand Response Service Emergency Program. This utility’s innovative approach sets a new bar for commercial and industrial customer peak load management programs in the Midwest. The program offers a peak load reduction program for over 110 commercial and industrial customer site that provide just over 55 MW of peak load curtailment to the utility. Customers participating in the program can earn a curtailment credit or payment. There are three reasons for the success of this program. First, the customer performance obligations are fair and simple–they follow the requirements developed by PJM. Second, the opportunity for aggregators to work with all customers that sign-up for the rider to create a “virtual power plant” makes the program much more accessible for many participants. Finally, the utility’s ongoing efforts to work with customers and aggregators to make the program work for everyone involved is the key piece in all of this.

Central Hudson Gas & Electric’s Peak Perks Program. In response to New York’s Reforming the Energy Vision (REV) initiative, Central Hudson is coordinating a demand response program into its electric transmission and distribution planning to offset anticipated peak load growth in three distinct zones. This will enable Central Hudson to defer new infrastructure projects in each of the three zones, reducing future bill pressure for customers and creating an additional earnings opportunity for the company. The program targets all customer classes with offerings that include residential direct load control equipment using two-way communicating Wi-Fi thermostats and load control switches, a customer engagement portal, as well as customized curtailment agreements for Commercial & Industrial customers. Comverge’s IntelliSOURCE cloud-based software provides the foundation for the program, and the utility also uses Comverge services for participant recruitment as well as program administration and support. In six months, Central Hudson achieved more than 30% participation of eligible customers within the targeted zone with the most timely capacity need. Central Hudson also exceeded the total first-year MW target for all three zones, achieving 5.9 MW of load reduction versus a target of 5.3 MW.

City of New York’s Municipal Demand Response Program. The City’s program encompasses over 340 facilities across 20 city agencies and organizations. For summer 2016 period, the program reduced over 58 MW, over 10% of load of the locations engaged, which comprise 40% of the City’s municipal peak load. Recent achievements include consistent 100% portfolio performance and over $9.5M in summer 2016 revenue. Drivers that helped the program progress include training for city agency administrators and building operations staff, year-round participation in NYISO, and expanded participation in Con Ed summer programs, City oversight supported by industry expert (NuEnergen)allowing agencies to keep earned revenue, recognition of top performers, and last, but not least, integration of real-time monitoring (RTM) technology. One of the most exciting and significant features of the program is an online platform developed and maintained by NuEnergen, based on specifications by the City’s program oversight team, to track program metrics and to monitor load in near-real-time.

Portland General Electric and AutoGrid for Pricing and Behavioral Demand Response Program. As part of their smart grid strategy, PGE is leveraging the AutoGrid Flex SaaS technology platform to deploy and evaluate the relative effectiveness of 12 pilot programs. These programs are engaging more than 10,000 residential customers with behavioral demand response opportunities and/or dynamic rates. Assisted by CLEAResult, PGE is using the project to determine which programs and pricing structures are most effective at engaging customers and delivering reliable load sheds. During the summer and winter of 2016, PGE deployed 14 DR events that achieved an average of 1.1 MW of load shed per event across all 12 programs. PGE will use the result of the pilot to extend the best program designs and rate structures to all qualified customers in 2019. When fully rolled out, the program is expected to lead to at least 30 MW of peak load reduction.

Target Corporation’s Demand Side Energy Program. This national retailer’s Demand Management Program, led by David Johnson, has influenced how Target operates its’ stores, leveraging new and existing technology and control strategies to deliver energy savings through peak demand reduction and participation in Demand Response programs. Target’s Peak Load Management program has grown from a pilot at 43 locations to a program impacting over 700 stores since 2013. In addition, Target has grown its Demand Response program to over 800 locations enrolled throughout the U.S. delivering 800,000 kWh of energy reduction in 2016 and over 70mW of capacity. Strong industry partnerships and prioritization of aggressive internal demand management goals has enabled Target to continue to leverage building automation systems, data aggregation, and analytics strategies to drive energy conservation and peak demand reductions.

About the Winners – Thought Leaders

KCP&L and Nest for the KCP&L Thermostat Program. This Midwestern utility is continuing its pioneering nature with a customer centric approach to revamping its 70 MW DLC Thermostat Program. Driven by the mantra of being a “Trusted Energy Partner” to its’ customers, KCP&L has partnered with Nest Labs and CLEAResult, two companies that share KCP&L’s philosophy on customer experience, to transition an initial 35,000 participants from legacy 1-way technology to 2-way verifiable Nest Learning Thermostats within its Missouri territory. The program, which is also open to new customers, kicked off in April 2016 with the objective of leveraging the intuitive design and ease of installation of the Nest Thermostat to offer customers “Do It Yourself”, CLEAResult provided Professional installation or “Bring Your Own” options to join KCP&L’s Thermostat Program. This model, which optimizes towards 70% DIY Installations, increases the efficiency and cost effectiveness of the program, allows for exponential scalability and rewards customers for empowering themselves with a $50 incentive for self-installation. By employing innovative marketing tactics, a unique delivery mechanism, as well as a best in class enrollment portal and Learning Thermostat, in 2016 the Thermostat Program cost effectively delivered over 8,000 Nest Thermostats to customers- 200% of the Program Year One goal.

Alectra Utilities’ (formerly PowerStream) Advantage Power Pricing (APP). This program was designed in collaboration with the Ontario system operator and regulator to motivate and enable substantial voluntary demand response. APP combines enabling technology with revenue-neutral dynamic rates to deliver average DR impacts of over 1 kW during critical periods. Meaningful customer bill savings – average of $74 of summer commodity cost savings – are achieved with over 70% of participants not having previously participated in DR or EE programs. Public funding continues to be renewed, and the pilot continues to provide important information as the provincial regulator moves forward along its roadmap for the provision of optional alternative regulated rates.

Brett Feldman, Navigant Research. Brett published research reports on leading-edge topics in the demand response/demand side management industry in 2016, including Bring Your Own Thermostat DR, Integrated DSM, Dynamic Pricing, DR Global Market Data and Forecasts, and Demand Response Management Systems. These reports have been leveraged into webinars, presentations, and articles for various industry organizations and publications throughout 2016. He planned and moderated a PLMA DR Dialogue on FERC Order 745 Supreme Court Decision within days of the announcement in January, and was a guiding force in the completion of the joint AESP/PLMA/ADS (SEPA) DR industry survey.

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