National Information Solutions Cooperative, a national software and IT cooperative, has been awarded a grant by the U.S. Department of Energy to deploy a "Green Button" solution.

Green Button is the DOE initiative designed to provide advanced technology that gives consumers convenient, computer-friendly access to their energy use information so they can better manage power consumption.

NISC will focus its Green Button efforts on its SmartHub platform, an integrated software solution that lets utilities offer consumers usage data, real time alerts, secure payments and a communications link to the utility through a website and iOS (Apple) and Android devices.

NISC will collaborate with two electric cooperatives -- Sawnee Electric Membership Corporation of Cumming, Georgia, and Kootenai Electric Cooperative (KEC) of Hayden, Idaho -- to address the project's key goals of helping consumers better manage electricity use, and learning the best ways to develop, deploy and promote Green Button technology. The project partners will also explore how to make the solution available to other electric utilities and the ten million households that NISC serves.

According to NISC's CEO Vern Dosch, NISC's SmartHub will use MultiSpeak to interface with the Green Button standard. MultiSpeak is the software standard widely used by electric cooperatives and developed by the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) and its research arm, the Cooperative Research Network (CRN).