NIPSCO and the state’s other jurisdictional electric utilities have been
ordered by the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission (IURC) to create “core
demand-side management (DSM) programs” intended to help consumers save
“Through a reasonable but aggressive timeline, the utilities are expected to
achieve an annual energy savings goal of 2 percent within 10 years with
interim savings goals for years one through nine,” the IURC said in a
statement released on Wednesday.
“Due to nonexistent or inconsistent DSM program offerings between the
individual utilities, the (IURC) ordered the utilities to move forward with
the following core programs: a home energy audit program; low-income
weatherization program; residential lighting program; energy efficiency
schools program; and commercial and industrial program,” the IURC said.
“DSM programs benefit consumers by saving energy, which is the most
cost-effective way of meeting future energy supply needs,” the IURC noted.
“It also has the corresponding benefit of reducing the need to build
additional generation capacity. The initial core programs should be designed
and offered by end of calendar year 2010 for all customers
classes—residential, commercial, and industrial.”
The IURC said that it will be issuing to requests for proposals: the first
for an independent third-party administrator to oversee and coordinate the
utilities’ core programs; the second for an evaluation administrator to
under the evaluation, measurement, and verification of the DSM programs to
ensure their effectiveness.
Indiana Utility Consumer Counselor David Stippler applauded the IURC’s order
in a separate statement released on Wednesday by the Indiana Office of
Utility Consumer Counselor, the state agency charged with representing the
interests of Indiana’s utility consumers. “Hoosier consumers will benefit
greatly from this order,” Stippler said. “Electric utilities under IURC
jurisdiction will establish a consistent group of demand side management
(DSM) programs that will benefit all of their customers in saving energy in
future years. I am especially encouraged that a statewide coordination
committee will develop these programs and am also pleased that independent
third-parties will be hired to administer and evaluate them. This approach
will provide significant opportunities for consistency in program offerings
and marketing messages, as well as economies of scale that can ensure these
programs operate most efficiently.”
With regard to energy savings as a percentage of utility sales, Indiana
ranks 22nd nationally and fourth among the seven Midwest states, the IURC
said. For the amount spent on energy efficiency initiatives, Indiana ranks
31st and sixth respectively.