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Utility to Test Smart Grid Technologies in New Hampshire and Massachusetts Service Territories
June 1, 2011
Hampton, N.H.

Unitil (www.unitil.com), a natural gas and electric delivery company with residential and business customers throughout New England, today launched its Energy Savings Management pilot program, designed to test several Smart Grid technologies that allow customers to conserve energy usage during periods of peak electrical demand, save money and reduce environmental impacts. The pilot is taking place during the summer season, typically the highest demand months of the year.

“This weekend’s heat was a reminder of how important it is to find ways to conserve energy,” said Justin Eisfeller, Unitil’s director of energy measurement and control. “Unitil is the first and only utility in New Hampshire and Massachusetts with an electrical infrastructure capable of supporting Smart Grid technology and we’re excited to further explore these capabilities and how they can help our customers save energy.”

The Energy Savings Management pilot program will provide Unitil with valuable insight on the factors that motivate customer participation in energy conservation and efficiency programs. Eligible participants have been divided into three customer categories that each test a different energy consumption control method. Smart Grid technologies have been installed in participating homes, which will enable the home owner to control their energy usage and will collect and relay each household’s energy consumption data to Unitil via two-way digital communications using the existing electrical grid. The pilot, which will conclude in August, will help determine the technologies that best improve service by reducing potential energy disruptions, provide customers with cost savings and reduce environmental impacts.

A Smart Grid is an electricity network that uses digital technology to improve the reliability and cost of energy delivery and provide information to consumers via two-way communications to control consumption in individual households, save energy, reduce costs and increase service reliability. Peak demand is a period during which there is significantly higher than average usage of electricity, most frequently occurring in the summer months due to increased air conditioning use. Participation in the Energy Savings Management pilot program includes Unitil’s residential customers who own a home equipped with an air conditioning system and plan to remain at their current residence for a minimum of nine months.

Residents not participating in the pilot program can also save energy by using electricity in off-peak demand periods, as well as using power strips for multiple home electronics, installing Energy Star brand appliances and replacing incandescent light bulbs with compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs). For additional simple tips for energy conservation as well as more information on Unitil’s Energy Savings Management pilot program and other energy conservation and efficiency initiatives, please visit www.unitil.com.

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About Unitil Corporation

Unitil Corporation provides energy for life by safely and reliably delivering natural gas and electricity in New England. We are committed to the communities we serve and to developing people, business practices, and technologies that lead to the delivery of dependable, more efficient energy. Unitil Corporation is a public utility holding company with operations in Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts. Together, Unitil’s operating utilities serve approximately 104,300 electric customers and 79,900 natural gas customers. Other subsidiaries include Usource, Unitil’s non-regulated business segment. For more information about our people, technologies, and community involvement please visit www.unitil.com.

 


For more information please contact:
Alec O'Meara

Media Relations Manager
omeara@unitil.com
Tel: 603-773-6404
Mobile: 603-998-9095




 

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