Utility watchdog Citizens Utility Board (CUB) and the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) are urging the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC) to have the state’s biggest electric utilities, Commonwealth Edison and Ameren, offer optional “Time-of-Use” electricity pricing plans. If the ICC agrees, the utilities would be more competitive with retail energy suppliers.
With Time-of-Use pricing, customers with digital electric meters can lower their power bills by curtailing their use during peak times. Cutting energy use at high-demand times lowers market electricity prices for everyone and reduces stress on the power grid.
Time-of-Use electricity pricing allows for a level of flexibility and efficiency that is nearly impossible with traditional, flat electric rates, says CUB.
EDF and CUB have asked the ICC to immediately begin an investigation to explore how ComEd and Ameren could offer Time-of-Use pricing, with hope that these new rates can be offered by 2016.