Retail Choice Regulator Opens Phase II Grid Modernization Proceeding With "Focus" On Providing Smart Meters Only To Certain Default Service Customers
July 7, 2020 Email This Story Copyright 2010-20 EnergyChoiceMatters.com
Reporting by Paul Ring • firstname.lastname@example.org
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The Massachusetts DPU has opened Phase II of its grid modernization proceeding with a "primary focus" of examining whether to deploy advanced metering to basic service (default service) customers with electric vehicles (EVs), in addition to a discrete number of other customers
As previously reported, the DPU previously found that a territory-wide deployment of AMI was not cost effective
In Phase II, the DPU will consider whether AMI deployment to certain customer groups would yield benefits that justify the cost of deployment
In the proceeding, the
Department will explore whether a targeted deployment of customer-facing technologies to electric vehicle ("EV") customers, including residential customers, low-income customers,
commercial and industrial ("C&I") customers, and EV charging site hosts, is appropriate.
The DPU said that the "primary focus" of the investigation will be
on basic service EV customers
"The Department expects that, at a minimum, a targeted
deployment of advanced metering functionality to basic service EV customers will help
establish the groundwork for future deployment of advanced metering functionality to other
customer segments," the DPU said
"An investigation into a targeted deployment of advanced metering functionality to EV
customers necessarily involves the exploration of TVR [time varying rate] designs and other dynamic pricing
options that would enable these customers to take advantage of the benefits of advanced
metering functionality," the DPU said
"In this proceeding, the
Department will investigate potential TVR designs for EV customers receiving basic service. Further, the Department will consider whether TVR options for these customers should include both supply and distribution rates," the DPU said.
With respect to competitive retail supply customers, the DPU did state that, "Although the Department's primary focus will be
on basic service EV customers, the Department will also consider what requirements must be
met to allow EV customers on competitive supply (and, in particular, EV customers that are
in a municipal aggregation program) to participate in TVR to achieve the benefits of
advanced metering functionality."
The DPU specifically sought comments on dynamic pricing options for basic service EV customers, and how municipal aggregators can facilitate the participation of
their EV customers in dynamic pricing to achieve the benefits of advanced metering
As part of the proceeding, the Department will investigate the current status, constraints, and flexibility of each utility's
metering, data management, communications, and billing systems as they relate to
incorporating advanced metering functionality.