Co-ops Reach 25-Percent AMI Penetration

According to a new report released today by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), the nation’s electric cooperatives are aggressively deploying advanced meters, demand response programs and time-of-use rates to meet the challenges of rugged service territories and increasing demand.

More than a quarter of the nation’s electric cooperatives have deployed advanced meters on some or all of their systems, according to “2010 Assessment of Demand Response and Advanced Metering,” report released today by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). According to FERC’s survey, co-ops continue to lead the industry in the area of advanced (smart) meter deployment: “As in previous surveys, electric cooperatives have the largest [advanced meter] penetrations, nearly twenty-five percent, among categories of organizations.” The report notes that “[t]he highest advanced meter penetration by cooperatives continues the trend seen in the 2006 and 2008 FERC Surveys.” The report also demonstrates that cooperatives have been and are actively pursuing time of use rates as a strategy for managing demand. “Time of use rates by cooperatives are offered in every region.… Cooperatives have the second highest percentage, about 22 percent of those enrolled.” Cooperatives enroll consumer-members in time of use programs at twice the rate of the industry at large: while cooperatives serve 10 percent of the nation’s electric consumers, 22 percent of consumers enrolled in time of use plans belong to cooperatives.