Demand Response: Frequently Asked Questions

Answers to Common Questions

What is Auto-DR?

Auto-DR stands for “Automated Demand Response.” Automated Demand Response is a term used by utilities that refers to reducing or shutting down loads automatically through the use of technology, rather than manual switching operations. Utilities will subsidize 2-way communications equipment to monitor and control motors, thus automating the Demand Response process.

What is capacity bidding?

This is a type of Demand Response program where a third-party provider acts as an intermediary between the utility and potential Demand Response candidates. The third-party provider recruits participants, coordinates their participation in peak demand events, and handles payment of incentives.

What is a Critical Peak Demand Period?

The California Independent System Operator is authorized to declare a Critical Peak Demand Period when an unusually high demand for electricity potentially degrades the operability and reliability of the grid. This typically occurs during hot summer days when air conditioning and other electricity use is highest.

What is curtailment?

Curtailment refers to reducing or shutting down electricity usage.

What are discretionary loads?

Discretionary loads are electrical loads that can be reduced more easily and with less impact – for example, pumps, compressors and fans. The opposite are static loads, like lighting, HVAC systems, and water or sewage pumps that cannot be reduced without impacting critical operations.

What is load control?

This refers to reducing electricity usage during Demand Response events.

What is load shedding?

This is another term for curtailment: reducing or shutting down electricity usage.

What is load shifting?

Load shifting refers to shifting usage of electricity – typically from a peak time to a non-peak time – to avoid higher costs or to capitalize on incentive program rewards.

What is peak demand?

Peak demand refers to peak electricity usage, generally caused by demand for air conditioning and cooling on hot summer afternoons.

What is a Peak Demand Event?

This is a limited duration time period when utilities ask participating customers to reduce or shut down loads.

What is a service point?

Any electrical device that uses electricity and connected to a meter that tracks electricity usage over time.

What is a Smart Grid?

A smart grid uses two-way digital communications to enable control of electricity usage at service points to save energy, reduce costs and increase reliability and transparency.

What is a Smart Meter?

Smart Meters are digital meters that accurately record power consumption and enable two-way communication between the meter and the central system for more precise measurement and reporting.

What is Time-of-Use pricing?

Time-of-Use pricing adjusts the rate a customer pays to reflect the cost to produce that electricity. Generally, the higher the demand, the more expensive electricity is to produce. So on a hot afternoon when air conditioners are creating more demand for electricity, a customer on Time-of-Use pricing would pay more.

Request a Custom Analysis of your Ag operations from a Demand Response specialist at Polaris Energy Services who will help you:

  • Design a Demand Response program that is optimized for your operations
  • Quantify the amount of incentives and equipment for which you are eligible
  • Identify the areas of impact on your operations
  • Define parameters for opting out of specific Demand Response events

Phone: 559-549-4993