Because energy trading opens with the markets, Southern California Edison forecasters and meteorologists are on the job at 4 a.m., running forecasts for weather, short-term load and renewables output. Using SAS Analytics for utilities, SCE has begun improving its forecasting efficiency by integrating and analyzing vast stores of data in its energy forecasting platform. Today SCE – one of the nation’s largest electric utilities, with nearly 5 million customers – is strengthening energy operations and preparing to address new smart grid challenges and opportunities.

With the increase of wind and solar resources and a high penetration of smart meters in the California market, the business of energy forecasting is increasingly complex. The Short-Term Load Forecasting team at SCE creates a larger number and greater variety of forecasts than ever before. However, gathering quality data for analysis is no longer labor-intensive. With SAS, Southern California Edison integrates data from a wide variety of sources and extracts crucial insights for decision making. Model development, data analysis, reporting and visualization are now all accomplished in a single integrated software platform, streamlining the load and price forecasting process.

Progress comes fast at Southern California Edison. With millions of smart meters poised to usher in big data, the forecasting team will gain access to smart grid analysis this year. Terabytes of detailed customer data will help the utility further improve short-term forecasts.