The Nations Utility Landscape is Changing: How You and Your Data Center Can Benefit and Help Your Local Utility

The Nations Utility Landscape is Changing: How You and Your Data Center Can Benefit and Help Your Local Utility

The Nations Utility Landscape is Changing: How You and Your Data Center Can Benefit and Help Your Local Utility 500 306 Enabled Energy
Grids are constrained, and the utility companies are responding by adjusting rates and rebates

At Enabled Energy, we watch closely to see how the utility companies across that nation are reacting to the demand on their electrical grid. As a result, these companies often adjust their rates and rebate/incentive programs.

Where are your data centers?

The dark green states have the highest commercial electricity rates.
Source:  https://www.chooseenergy.com/electricity-rates-by-state/

We recently asked our contacts at several of the largest utility companies across the country to summarize what is changing with their rebate/incentive programs in 2019.

On the West Coast, our contact at PG&E noted that “not much has changed for this year”.  They continue to provide a custom incentive program for new load and retrofit programs. By working directly with PG&E’s team and providing solid engineering and a good business case, substantial incentives are being approved.  PG&E is also rolling out an on-bill financing program to help fund energy projects.

In the Midwest, Xcel Energy is currently modifying their program this year to focus on reducing their peak loads.  As of July 1st, there will no longer by prescriptive rebates for EC Fan Retrofits.  However, rebates will still be available for data center studies.  In addition, custom implementation rebates will actually be up to $500/PCkW (Coincident Peak) and $100/other kW for preapproved projects.  Similar to PG&E, Enabled Energy is working closely with the Xcel team to provide the required engineering and business cases for their clients to receive the above rebates.

What is Coincident Peak?

COINCIDENT PEAK is your facility’s demand during the time when electricity demand system wide is the highest.

In the South, Oncor’s Ron Haskovec manages the Custom Commercial Program and the Commercial Load Management Program.  He and Enabled Energy work closely to provide incentives to those who implement qualified energy efficiency measures, such as HVAC equipment upgrades.  In 2018, Oncor provided $2,199,132 in incentive dollars for HVAC projects.  This year, Oncor has budgeted over $10M in incentives for all their commercial programs.

And in the Northeast, ConEdison is offering rebates that are almost double of those available last year.  This means that most of our clients will see “50% off” on their qualifying 2019 energy projects.  Enabled Energy is currently completing three projects in New York City.  Stay tuned for “case studies” that show the total savings we were able to achieve.

What does all of this mean?

Rates and rebates have changed again, and they will change again in the future too.  If you’re looking at ways to start or support an energy management program, consider looking at the potential utility-based incentives from your local utility. Keep checking in with us and we’ll help you engineer and administer your project to take advantage of the maximum rebates and incentives possible.  Depending on the program, they can typically fund 10-50% of the project’s first cost.

For more specific information about programs available in your Data Center, please contact us at 303.761.9890.

About the Author

Joe Staib leads the daily activities at Enabled Energy. After graduating with a degree from Villanova and designing aircraft engine controllers for a year, Joe decided to leave GE and chase his two passions of construction and energy management. He went back to school, completed a master’s degree in engineering from Penn State, and wrote his thesis on optimizing energy efficiency in buildings. From that point on, Joe has enjoyed a diverse career in both the energy and the construction industries.  These experiences include jobs with a large automation company, an energy services company, a top ten design-build mechanical contractor, and a real estate development firm. He brings his engineering training and mindset to all of his work activities, i.e. as a problem solver.  Joe has been in the energy and construction business for 25 years.

While not at EE, Joe spends most of his time with his wife, children and extended family.  He also enjoys most sports, remodeling old homes, and taking road trips.