In partnership with PLMA, this group is for practitioners from energy utilities, solution providers, and trade allies to share load management expertise and explore innovative approaches to program delivery, pricing constructs, and technology adoption.

Peter Key's picture
Freelance Writer, Editor, Consultant, Self-employed

I've been a business journalist since 1985 when I received an MBA from Penn State. I covered energy, technology, and venture capital for The Philadelphia Business Journal from 1998 through 2013....

  • Member since 2015
  • 415 items added with 285,809 views
  • Jun 22, 2021

When a cold snap melted down the Electric Reliability Council of Texas' grid last winter, some Lone Star State residential electric customers were shocked to learn they had enrolled in programs that charged them for power at the rate it was going for on ERCOT's market at the moment they were consuming it.

The recent heat wave in Texas brought another surprise, this time to residential electric customers who had enrolled in programs that allowed their power providers to jack up their thermostat a few degrees during a heat wave to reduce overall load.

I understand that people often don't read fine print. I've blindly clicked the agree box on so many electronic documents from Apple that I half expect Steve Jobs to claim my soul when I finally ring down the curtain and join the choir invisible.

But anyone surprised they could get walloped in the wallet by a program that charges them spot-market rates for power or have their thermostat remotely adjusted when they enroll in a program that rewards them for helping a grid operator save energy during peak-demand periods isn't someone who just doesn't read fine print.

It's someone who has trouble comprehending any print.



Roberto Quadrini's picture
Roberto Quadrini on Jun 28, 2021

The management of iso-confort (the best confort conditions) to balance the electricity grid and avoid imbalance through peak shaving is the first step towards flexibility of demand to support the grid operator's dispatching services. In this mode the manager creates a un-confort to chase a grid problem (unbalancing). The optimal solution for the customer and the power grid is to adopt the Load Shaping model where the best comfort is always maintained using consumption programming (at least every 15 minutes, but the granularity can go down to real time) by identifying temporal blocks of electrical flexibility. that used by the power grid balancing production with demand before the imbalance problem arises. This methodology provides for the minimization of un-confort by scheduling of temperature and maximizing the programs of the power grid, this is described in two US patents. Ercot is on the right way, now the ad energy as a service model should be evolved using the load shaping paradigm, based on the program of the electricity consumption of air conditioners, to begin with. Available for further information on the optimal methodology.

US009991705  (

US010374425 ( 

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