THE SMART MONEY IS ON ‘SMART SAVERS”
Summers are oppressively hot and humid in Georgia. You want to get out of the sun whenever possible and inside a building with a good air-conditioning system.
Smart consumers at Sawnee EMC in Cumming, a summer-peaking co-op between Atlanta and Gainesville, do this and save money at the same time by signing up for the co-op’s “Smart Savers” program, a demand-response initiative specifically designed for co-op members with programmable thermostats connected to the Internet.
This allows Sawnee EMC to briefly adjust residential members’ thermostats during times of peak demand. Along with the co-op’s 30 year-old load-management program for air conditioners, Smart Savers helps keep rates down for all 150,000 consumers, or 170,000 meters, on the co-op’s lines.
“We have over 2,000 thermostats enrolled now,” says Blake House, Sawnee’s vice president of marketing and members services. “This program is a great option for members who have new, high-efficiency AC units that may not be compatible with our existing load-management switch.”
For enrolling in the program, members get a $50 credit for each thermostat in their home and an additional $36 per thermostat for every subsequent summer they remain in the program.