Energy efficiency plays a critical role in creating energy infrastructure. To encourage energy efficiency in the region, Smart City San Diego is focusing on new and existing synergies and programs for consumers to create a more energy efficient grid. Smart City San Diego will leverage smart meters, the Internet and Smart Grid elements including Integrated Volt/Var Control (IVVC) and Distributed Energy Resources (DER) Management to maximize energy efficiency and demand response (DR) in new ways.
Smart City San Diego will work in tandem with the City of San Diego and their Property Assessment Clean Energy Program and Energy Upgrade California Program. Both programs are designed to qualify homes for energy efficiency upgrades.
The Energy Efficiency effort has two Projects centered around Smart Appliance Initiative – 100 homes Smart Appliance program. GE will offer discounted Smart Appliances to either a developer that will build 100 homes or select 100 randomly picked homes for energy upgrades.
Project 1: Home Laundry Pair
GE would offer GE Smart Appliances to homeowners who are interested in upgrading their appliances. SDG&E will provide the Nucleus, PCT, Comm Module needed to support the smart appliances. This effort requires that SDG&E test the smart appliance in tandem with the accessories to ensure GE Nucleus (gateway into the home) binds with meter. The testing is a two month effort, which must take place before the program can be launched with homeowners. GE is supplying smart appliances and accessories to SDG&E for testing purposes, which will begin in January 2012.
Smart City San Diego will also monitor the efforts of the GE Global Research team and their “Build America” team in San Diego. GE is developing a pilot package that will integrate roof top solar panels, smart grid enabled energy-efficient appliances, energy-efficient lighting, and the GE Nucleus Home Energy Manager. It was funded by the Department of Energy’s Building America Program.
What is demand response?
Demand response is a resource that allows end-use electric customers to reduce their electricity usage in a given time period, or shift that usage to another time period, in response to a price signal, a financial incentive, an environmental condition or a reliability signal. Demand response saves ratepayers money by lowering peak time energy usage, which are high-priced. This lowers the price of wholesale energy, and in turn, retail rates. Demand response may also prevent rolling blackouts by offsetting the need for more electricity generation and can mitigate generator market power.