Does the combination of high use alerts and e-mail messages produce higher energy savings over just the home energy reports (HERs)? We would like to understand the level of effort it takes to launch this type of project. Cowlitz PUD in conjunction with O Power is conducting research to determine the incremental energy saving impact of an Advanced Digital Feedback and Communication Campaign in addition to O Power's Home Energy Reporting Program. Cowlitz will send 25,000 Home Energy Reports (HERs) to their customers while engaging 12,500 of them through an Advanced Digital Campaign using high use alerts and e-mail messaging. The HERs program uses billing data, census data, and other information to create a neighbor-to-neighbor billing comparison to try and change human behavior resulting in kilowatt hours saved. The hypothesis is that the customer will be moved to use less energy, operate their home more efficiently or to make no-cost, low-cost, or deemed measure changes in their home if they can compare their use with like customers. The Advanced Digital Campaign is experimental. Cowlitz is one of just a few utilities testing this approach. Research results will be available in August of 2013. Improvement over previous research: Cowlitz has advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) and will be able to provide 24-hour interval data making this the first time in the Northwest that HERs has been combined with interval data.
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