Energy efficiency, typically measured on an annual basis, can be used to help utilities meet peak demand at a low cost relative to other available tools, according to a new study from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.
The Berkeley Lab also introduced two new acronyms: PA CSE, which stands for the program administrator cost of saving electricity; and PA CSPD, which stands for the program administrator cost of saving peak demand. The lab’s Electricity Markets & Policy Group gathered data on costs, energy savings, and peak demand savings for electricity programs at 36 IOUs and other PAs in nine states from 2014 to 2017.
During the three-year study period, the savings-weighted PA CSE averaged $0.029 kWh, and the savings-weighted PA CSPD averaged $1,483/kWh.
There are many ways to reduce peak demand, with energy efficiency as part of the mix. As the study’s abstract notes, “with increasing need for a more flexible and resilient electricity system, and changing costs for generation, utilities and other efficiency program administrators must take into account all characteristics of efficiency programs—including peak demand reduction—to ensure a reliable system at the most affordable cost.”
Whatever the source, it all adds up (or down, in this case). At Virtual Peaker, we host the world’s most advanced distributed energy platform and have the honor of working with the most innovative utilities and energy companies in the country. We know that, no matter the source, a kWh saved is a kWh saved. And energy efficiency plays an critical role in overall peak reduction.