The Newton-Evans research firm completed a privately funded study in September of last year that looked at utilities’ demand response, load management and direct load control programs.

Seventy utilities participated in the survey, with 38% indicating that demand response programs were underway as of September 2010. Forty percent of the utilities indicated plans to implement some form of load management program at their utility over the 2011-2013 period. These seven utilities accounted for more than 30 million end-use customers, or about 21% of the total served U.S. electricity customer base.

“The concept of demand response seems to be gaining momentum, especially in context with the smart grid,” said Kevin Evans, CEO of Energy Connect, a demand response technology provider. “You will see much more ‘technology-enabled’ demand response in the future.”

More than a third of utilities plan to use programmable thermostats while nineteen percent already have that capability. One half of the 70 participating utilities were already using a/c switch control, and about one quarter were planning to add this capability. Forty-two percent stated they used current water heater switch controls, and 19% plan to add this capability. Only 16% indicated any load response/curtailment feature for residential, and only six percent plan to include this in the future. AMI was noted as already implemented (to some extent) in 48% of the utilities, and 23% indicated having plans to add AMI in the future.

The content provided above was provided by Newton-Evans for this inaugural issue of the Penton Media’s Customer Solutions Center of Excellence:

Additonal, exclusive results from Newton Evans will be provided in upcoming newsletters.