If you have been a member of DEC for a while, you know our number-one goal here at the Cooperative is to help our members, not only by providing them with electricity, but by helping them manage their energy use. One way we have been able to do that is through our Beat the Peak initiative. Started in 2008, Beat the Peak is a system that helps members monitor when energy costs are at their highest so they know when to conserve. It’s as simple as plugging in the in-home indicator and paying attention. In the long run, this device not only saves you energy, but money too.
Beat the Peak works on a red-light green-light system. When you plug it in, the green light turns on, indicating that all is well, and members can use their appliances and electronic devices as they see fit. But when it switches to yellow, it means it’s time to get ready—a peak will be happening within the hour. When the light on the indicator turns red, that’s when members are asked to voluntarily conserve. This can be anything, from not running heavy-duty appliances like washers and dryers until the peak passes, or turning off the oven and grilling dinner instead. The goal is to use as little energy as possible. Any effort helps.
By conserving energy at these times, the Co-op is able to meet the demand without having to purchase energy on the market at higher prices, which in turn saves you money as a member. DEC has a demand charge they pay once a month, based on how much power is used during the peak periods. By conserving, members save the Co-op on their costs, and those savings are returned to the members in lower rates. Since its inception, Beat the Peak has saved members approximately $24 million. It makes sense to try and save energy. Now, DEC has made the alert process even easier by adding text/email notifications to the list of ways members can stay in the know.
Setting up text and/or notifications for your peak alerts is simple. By accessing the DEC site and logging into your account from a desktop/laptop computer, click “Notifications,” at the top of the page, then select “Manage Contacts” from the menu. Just type in your phone number/email for notification and verify your contact information, and you are set.
June is a busy month, and everyone is focused on everything they want to do while the weather is warm. It’s easy to forget something like energy conservation. With Beat the Peak, DEC makes it easier to save. To sign up, visit www.beatthepeak.coop or call 855-332-9090.