Demand response (DR) advocates in Texas are preparing a bill they say would open up the state’s energy markets and unlock DR growth.
Reducing power consumption can help control up to 4% of the Electric Reliability Council of Texas’ (ERCOT) peak load, FERC determined in a 2012 report. That’s actually the lowest among organized markets in the U.S., but DR advocates believe it could reach as high as 15% if barriers are reduced. They say the development of DR in Texas has been hampered by caps on how much can be procured, limitations on who can participate in the electricity market, and technical requirements that are based on how generators operate rather than how loads are consumed.
“Demand response represents an extremely cost effective alternative to generation and some of the stakeholders are not moving forward,” Frank Lacey, chair of the Advanced Energy Management Alliance (AEMA), told Utility Dive.
The group, which has been pushing for legislation that would open up the Texas market, is made up of demand response providers and supporters. But it also boasts Walmart, Alcoa and Century Aluminum as members.
“We are lobbying, we are trying to get a bill out,” said Lacey, who is also vice president of regulatory and market strategy for Comverge.