Preparing for the impact of widespread electric vehicle (EV) adoption has emerged as a top priority for utilities. Our program with Baltimore Gas and Electric (BGE) demonstrates a new way utilities can take action to manage load from EV charging.
EnergyHub has partnered with BGE to evolve and grow the utility’s behind-the-meter DER programs. BGE will use EnergyHub’s Mercury DERMS platform to manage multiple asset classes, including a Bring Your Own Thermostat (BYOT) demand response program and a time of use (TOU) EV charging program. This is the first-ever instance of a utility implementing a rate-based TOU program based on charging data from a DERMS platform.
The programs allow BGE to build a multi-DER portfolio for grid services while providing value to customers. Participants in the thermostat program will receive financial incentives for signing up and staying enrolled, and participants in the TOU rate program will have access to a lower rate by charging during specified off-peak hours – while using customer-owned devices.
“We’re excited to partner with EnergyHub to manage multiple DER asset types for different use cases with a single full-service platform. The EnergyHub Mercury DERMS allow us to execute our vision for the industry’s first DERMS-based EV TOU program alongside a trusted BYOT solution, all with an approach that puts customer experience first.”
-Mark Case, Vice President of Regulatory Policy and Strategy, Baltimore Gas and Electric
Evolving Demand Response to BYOD with a DERMS
BGE is a national leader in demand response, with combined switch and direct install thermostat programs counting over 350,000 participants. Implementing EnergyHub’s Mercury DERMS allows BGE to evolve their existing demand response programs to a customer-friendly BYOD model and gives the utility the ability to manage multiple behind-the-meter asset classes with a single platform.
BGE is leveraging EnergyHub’s industry-leading partner ecosystem to move to a BYOD program design that embraces consumer choice, and will also benefit from using a more cost-effective deployment model to bring demand response to its residential customers.
Deploying an EV TOU Rate with a DERMS
BGE is taking action to manage EV load based on anticipated trends in EV ownership. The Maryland Public Utilities Commission asked utilities to prepare for the adoption of 300,000 EVs by 2025 in a way that minimizes grid impacts and avoids placing the burden of infrastructure updates on customers. BGE’s response was to leverage EnergyHub’s Mercury DERMS to implement a TOU program to incentivize off-peak charging by granting customers access to a preferred rate during certain portions of the day.
EV-specific TOU rates have typically relied on data collected by dedicated utility-owned meters, which are expensive and limit program enrollment. BGE’s EV TOU program will collect charging data from customers’ Level 2 charging equipment, aggregated by EnergyHub’s Mercury DERMS, in order to bill customers.
Managing an EV TOU rate through a DERMS avoids the need for an additional meter and allows the customer to participate through their own Level 2 charging equipment. BGE’s program enhances the customer experience, eliminates the cost of additional meter hardware, and removes barriers to enrollment. Deploying EnergyHub’s DERMS also allows BGE to lay the foundation for leveraging EV charging for additional grid services such as demand response and managed charging in the future.
We’re excited to work with a customer-focused smart grid pioneer like BGE as they take a proactive approach to prepare for the future of widespread EV growth. The EV TOU Program breaks new ground for the industry with a model that allows the utility to manage load while providing value for customers. We’re looking forward to sharing more details as we work with BGE to measure the impact of their DER programs.