By City News Service
Southern California Edison customers are being asked to conserve energy -- and get paid to do it -- on Monday afternoon, when heat is expected to drive overall power usage to high levels, the firm said today.
Under its "Save Power Day" program, residential customers can earn 75 cents per kilowatt hour of conserved energy between 2 and 6 p.m. on designated days, like this Monday will be.
The utility can use its smart meters to determine how much energy is used during those hours, and then compare that to the three highest usage amounts in the prior five days.
If the customer beats that average, he or she gets the rebate, the firm said. A residential customer can save up to $100 per year simply by putting off laundry or dryer loads, turning off pool or spa filters, keeping the refrigerator door closed, and using other common-sense power saving tools.
"The Save Power Day program is a great way for our customers to save money while conserving energy," said the company's director of program operations, Mark Wallenrod. "Signing up is easy."
SC Edison is trying to shave its peak power demand, a need made greater by the loss of the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station due to design defects.
The California ISO, a state agency that coordinates electricity supplies across the state, predicted statewide power usage today to be 36.9 billion watts, well below the 46 billion watts available. Monday's demand was predicted to be about 42 billion watts.
But SC Edison and other utilities are forced to pay higher wholesale prices for electricity during peak demand periods, which is why the California Public Utilities Commission has approved the company's efforts to cut peak hour power usage.
SC Edison today urged its residential customers to sign up for Save Power Day by visiting its web site, www.sce.com/takeaction . The company sends out Save Power Day alerts via phone, email or text, at the customer's option.