Empowering Consumers to Optimise their Energy Consumption through Demand Side Management
With technological advancements and smarter energy systems, there is enormous potential for consumers to play a more active role in optimising their energy consumption. Known as Demand Side Management (DSM), DSM involves consumers managing their energy demand through incentives or behavioral changes in their consumption pattern.
The benefits of DSM are potentially two-fold at the individual and system level. First, consumers can reduce their electricity bills by adjusting the timing and amount of electricity use. Second, the energy system can benefit from the shifting of energy consumption from peak to non-peak hours. To demonstrate the viability of DSM initiatives for consumers, EMA launched Project OptiWatt. Two solutions were implemented under Project Optiwatt.
Demand Response (DR): Reducing barriers to entry through streamlined IT requirements
In response to industry feedback that participation in DSM involved a complex registration process and challenging operational requirements, EMA made changes to encourage take-up in the programme. For example, consumers are now allowed to appoint a third party agent to participate in the DR programme on their behalf. The third party agent can use its existing IT infrastructure to participate in the programme instead of the consumer having to implement a new IT system. This has resulted in the first DR application in August 2017 for a sizeable industrial load of about 1% of Singapore’s peak demand.
eResponse Incentive Pilot: Facilitating new business models and encouraging experimentation
To encourage innovation, EMA collaborated with Red Dot Power (RDP), an independent electricity retailer, to pilot a new business model, known as the eResponse incentive pilot scheme. This scheme would give customers incentives when they reduced or shifted their energy consumption during times of high electricity prices. This would result in a “triple-win” outcome for RDP (reduced exposure to high market prices), consumers (lower energy costs or incentives for change in consumption pattern) and the power system (reduced need to build more capacity to meet peak demand).
The eResponse scheme was implemented from April to August 2017 with the following Project OptiWatt partners - Ngee Ann Polytechnic, Temasek Polytechnic and Institute of Technical Education (Central and West). This saw the reduction of energy consumption (e.g. use of air-conditioners) for these four Institutions without compromising on comfort for those on the campuses. There are plans to progressively introduce it to other consumers.