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Load management agreement to reduce generation

Load management agreement to reduce generation

Genesis Energy and Powerco are working together to use installed load management technology to reduce peak demands on the country’s electricity system.

The ground breaking agreement will enable Genesis Energy, the country’s largest energy retailer with 700,000 customers, to manage the supply of electricity to customers who have elected to be on a controlled tariff for hot water heating and other services.

The measures will apply to residential customers on a controlled tariff in Powerco’s Western (Wairarapa to Taranaki) and Valley (Coromandel and Hauraki Plains) regions.

Controlled hot water heating has been an area of contention between generator/retailers and lines companies in the past as the issue of who owns load management has been in dispute. But Genesis Energy and Powerco have moved beyond this and will work together to utilise load management for customers.

The new agreement, which commenced on 4 April, will allow Genesis Energy to move hot water heating away from peak times in order to reduce demand on the electricity market.

As the southern lakes remain below average, Genesis Energy expects wholesale prices to continue at high levels for the foreseeable future. Load shifting can reduce peak demand on hydro generation.

The agreement with Powerco will enable Genesis Energy to move the hot water load from morning and evening peak periods. Genesis Energy is hopeful that other network companies will join the programme of load shifting following Powerco’s lead.

Genesis Energy spokesman Richard Gordon said most customers with ripple controlled hot water should not notice any difference to their supply of hot water.

Customers who elect to be on the controlled tariff pay a lower tariff for their electricity in the knowledge that their hot water heating, and other controlled appliances such as swimming pool heating, can be turned off at the suppliers’ discretion.

The most common method of controlling hot water is ripple control. Houses with a ripple control have a normal meter and a separate relay which is connected to the hot water system. The lines company can delay the start of hot water heating by sending a ripple or pulse down the power line which signals the relay to switch off. A similar pulse turns the relay back on.


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