Real time pricing pilot program encouraged


Stan Wise,
Public Service
Atlanta, GA, U.S.A. — (METERING.COM) — February 16, 2007 – U.S. utility Georgia Power plans to propose a real time pricing pilot program this year, for implementation in 2008, which could see as many as 1000 customers using smart meters to manage their electricity consumption. This is as a result of initiatives by the Georgia Public Service Commission, and in particular Commissioner Stan Wise, who asked the utility to develop and file a tariff for a real time pricing pilot.

The proposed program will reward customers for changing their behavior and using more electricity during off-peak periods, but will not penalize those who ignore requests from the utility to limit consumption. Electricity rates will remain the same, and those consumers who do save energy will receive a rebate.

“Consumers are not sensitive to cutting power during peak periods because our regulatory system insulates them from what is happening on the power grid,” said Wise. “If we encourage even a small percentage of customers to participate in real-time pricing, it will have a significant impact on reducing power spikes during peak demand, which reduces the stress on the entire system and brings down prices for all of us.”

Although C&I customers have enjoyed the benefits of real time pricing for 20 years, if the Georgia Power proposal is adopted by the PSC it will be the first time that residential customers will be exposed to the concept.