It's Smart Grid Payback Time: EnerNOC DR Pays Store Chain $250,000
By: SGN Staff
Could EnerNoc's own press releases backfire? It's great that customers are beginning to earn real dollars by participating in demand response. But as more and more customers are realizing the value of their DR contributions, they are asking for a bigger piece of the pie. It is gradually getting harder and harder for the DR companies to renew contracts without handing over more of the money. Press releases like this one serve to remind customers to bargain even harder the next time their contract comes up for renewal -- or the next time one of EnerNOCs dozens of competitors tries to get them to switch.
A southern California grocery store chain has earned $250,000 annually for its participation in energy solutions provider EnerNOC's demand response (DR) program. Customers can earn by cutting back on non-essential energy use during times of peak demand and high electricity prices.
Stater Bros. Markets hooked up with EnerNOC's DR program in 2008 because it saw the opportunity to make some money while protecting its 148 stores and their surrounding communities from California's famous brownouts and rolling blackouts.
The chain made it work by making minor adjustments to store lighting, air conditioning and other electricity gobbling functions during peak demand and other events that cause pressure on the electric grid.
Customers may be aware of the changes, but the store chain posts signs explaining what it is doing and why. Apparently, the reductions don't affect the "shopping experience." EnerNOC says customer feedback has been good.
"EnerNOC provided at no cost, the documentation, technology and the assistance needed to implement DR at all locations," said Scott Limbacher, VP of construction and maintenance.
Now, does that mean groceries are cheaper?
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