US utility Con Edison has received a greenlight from the New York Public Service Commission to implement a demand response programme.
The $5 million pilot programme will help the utility to reduce residential and commercial customer demand for natural gas.
The programme will apply to customers in New York City and Westchester County over the next three years.
The approval follows the utility witnessing an increase in demand for natural gas during peak times especially for heating their homes in winter.
The pilot programme will help negate the need for additional gas infrastructure. Reducing peak day demand for natural gas not only yields dividends in carbon reduction but can also decrease costs to consumers. This programme is intended to help reduce the reliance on natural gas as New York transitions to clean energy.
Customers will be allowed to work with third party demand response aggregators to identify measures to reduce their demand for gas.
Commission Chair John B. Rhodes, said: “Demand response has proven to be an effective tool to manage demand and save costs on the electric system.
“While some gas customers have been doing demand response for years, this program will enhance gas customers' ability to reduce peak day demand. This pilot program will be among the first-of-its-kind in the country and should provide valuable insights for energy system planning and for further demand reduction approaches of all gas utilities.”