Policy Feedback (PURPA)

Demand-Response Strategies. Four County buys the power its members use at different rates based on how much electricity is being used at that time. Power costs the most when the most people are using it, called the peak. How much power is used during the peak determines how many power production plants need to be built and how many investments need to go into the transmission systems that get the power from where it is generated to where it is consumed.

The Federal Government has requested that Four County consider ways to address the costs associated with the peak, either by reducing the amount of power consumed or by acquiring energy resources that can produce more power when needed.

Four County already has demand-response programs available for its members to opt into such as Beat the Peak and Connect to Save, which use smart-home technology to subtly reduce energy consumption across members who opt in. Four County has also partnered with its state-wide affiliate, NCEMC, to bring online a battery storage system for demand-response, in conjunction with other Cooperatives across the state.

The Federal Government is now requiring that Four County consider these and additional programs to consider how Four County will address demand-response in the future. Four County will be considering things like expanding its current programs, exploring new programs, and looking at the feasibility of additional energy resources.

EV Charging. The Federal Government has also required that electric utilities, like Four County, examine the role they will play in the proliferation of electric vehicles (EVs). There are several programs and policies that Four County has considered and will continue to consider as EVs become more and more commonplace. Firstly, cost-control mechanisms like advanced-time-of-use rates can help distribute EV charging to minimize the cost borne by non-EV members. This rate would charge a premium for charging at peak times and a reduced price for charging at off-peak times, like during the night when electricity is cheapest.

Additionally, Four County must consider the ways in which it can encourage adoption of EVs where appropriate. Four County has already been exploring such opportunities, called “beneficial electrification,” and has knowledgeable staff on site to discuss electric farm equipment and has advocated for the adoption of electric school buses.


Are you a member of Four County EMC?(Required)