AMI minimum functionality established paving way for rollout in New York


Garry Brown,
Albany, NY, U.S.A. — (METERING.COM) — February 13, 2009 – The New York State Public Service Commission has established minimum functional requirements for AMI in New York and has created a process for the development of a generic approach to AMI cost-benefit analysis, opening the way for AMI rollout in the state.

As a result of the decision the three utilities that had filed proposals for pilot programs – Consolidated Edison Company of New York Inc. (Con Edison), Orange & Rockland Utilities Inc. (Orange & Rockland) and Central Hudson Gas and Electric Corp. (Central Hudson) – are required to file updated pilot AMI projects within 60 days. No filing deadline was established for the other utilities that had not filed pilot proposals.

The order approved by the Commission requires that AMI systems in New York must provide a wide variety of functional capabilities, including: AMI meters must meet ANSI standards, support net metering, provide the ability for a visual read, provide time-interval data, have sufficient memory storage, provide customers with direct, real time access to electric meter data, can be read remotely on demand, utilize an open standards-based communication protocol, have a two-way communications capability, send signals to customer equipment to trigger demand response functions, connect with a home area network to provide direct or customer-activated load control, identify, locate and determine the extent of an outage, be upgradable, and provide safe and secure transfer of data.

“We want to move forward with this initiative,” said Commission chairman Garry Brown. “Our goal is to empower customers with more information and the ability to control their energy costs. In addition, our decision makes ready a path to quickly take advantage of the federal stimulus money that will likely be available for electric infrastructure and advanced metering projects.”

In other decisions the Commission gave a boost to net metering, with changes to the tariffs of the six investor-owned utilities in New York to strengthen and promote installation of small scale renewable energy systems in homes and businesses. In addition the Commission approved increases in the maximum sizes of residential solar generation and farm waste generation systems eligible for net metering and the expansion of net metering to non-residential solar generation systems.

The Commission also initiated a new proceeding to consider demand response measures to be implemented during peak electricity demand periods. The new proceeding seeks to enhance existing programs and develop new demand response programs using a more integrated approach to delivery of these programs among the various program providers. The initial focus will be on demand response measures in Con Edison’s service territory, where demand response is expected to be the most cost effective.