The Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC), with the complicity of the electric companies, is trying to shove mandatory time-of-use rates down our throats. This will likely mean MANDATORY SMART METERS in our near future!
Time-of-use (peak pricing) programs can't take place without smart meters. So, if you don't want smart meters, you need to take action, or they will become mandatory! Peak pricing means you pay more for electricity a the times of day people use it most.
DTE’s own website shows they will charge 300% more for peak power than off-peak. If you don't want astronomical bills for using power when you need--i.e., at normal times of the day--then you have got to submit a comment!
Submit your comment to the Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC). Public comments matter. Public comments can be used in court cases. They can show the legislators where public sentiment really is.
If you don’t comment, you are complicit in allowing smart meters to overtake our lives. Commenting will take 5 minutes of your time. I need to know that I did not waste my time by preparing this information for you all (it took me 4 1/2 hours to prepare this information). Please send comments in.
First, I give you some background below. Following that are sample comments you can send in, or you can write your own comments. At a minimum, write the MPSC and say you don’t want the demand-response program.
What the MPSC Is Trying to Force Down Our Throats
Turning off your appliances at will
Forcing you to use electricity at certain hours or
pay up to 10 times as much as normal
Force customers without a smart meter to pay up to 300% more than customers with a smart meter
Everyone will be charged more for using electricity, unless you use it in the wee hours of the night. Time-of-use programs are also known as peak pricing and demand-response programs. Time-of-use means you will be charged more for using electricity at thee times of day you need it most (unless you are someone who does all your food preparation, laundry, TV-watching, and computer work in the middle of of the night).
Voluntary--for a while. Time-of-use programs start off as voluntary. It's the old "slippery slope" phenomenon. In the beginning, discounts are given to those who voluntarily participate in the program. We all know where the smart meter agenda is leading--to extensive and coercive control over what you use and when you use it. What was once voluntary--giving candy to the child--becomes coerced.
Automatic appliance shut-off. When you participate in the program, you allow the utility to turn-off appliances or throttle-down your usage at peak times (times when demand for electricity is greatest, such as in the morning and in the evening)
Mandatory Smart MetersWithout a smart meter that can tell when you are using electricity and controls your smart-chipped appliances and , peak pricing and demand-response won't work.
“The reason we’re putting these [smart] meters in is to be able to bill the time-of-use rates that are going to be mandatory.” Cleveland Utilities.
Mandatory Higher Bills
“The reason we’re putting these [smart] meters in is to be able to bill
the time-of-use rates that
are going to be mandatory.” Cleveland Utilities.
If you don’t participate in time-of-use rates, you will be forced to pay more for electricity. If you look at our Costs page, you will see lots of information on how time-of-use rates and smart meters astronomically raise electric bills. If you don't participate, allowing them to shut off appliances, etc. then your daily rates will be the peak rate all day long--because they can't tell when you are using electricity. Peak power rates, according to DTE's website, are worth 300% more than normal rates.
Wherever mandatory time-of-day pricing is implemented, rates go way up. Apolitical About.com has a chilling article on what is to come. This article is well worth reading. Here’s an excerpt: “For those who cannot function in the wee hours of the morning or late at night, consider dividing your wash into loads and run your washer and dryer for one load every evening, as soon as the off-peak time slot begins. If the cycle is too long and you're an early-to-bed type of person, use a shorter cycle and consider hanging the wash to dry.”
Here are a just a few examples of time-of-use rates:
- On-peak rates 3 times off-peak rates (22 cents/kWh vs 7 cents/kWh) (parts of Texas)
- Peak rates up to 10 times off-peak rates (parts of Texas)
- Electric rates 15% higher between 6 a.m. and 9 p.m. (Washington)
- Electric rates doubled between 7 a.m. and 9 p.m. (Ontario)
- Home businesses
- Elderly and retired
- Chronically ill
- Families with small children who are not in day care
This pricing scheme is discriminatory against anyone who must be at home utilizing electricity at peak demand times, including people with home businesses, the elderly, and the chronically ill.
Who to Write to
In the subject line of your email you must put: U-17936, U-18013
(these numbers let the MPSC know what case you are commenting on)
Let us know you wrote or will write. Click here to let us know.
Note: It is best if you alter the wording of the samples so that the MPSC sees individuals thinking about this and writing in. I suggest that you take an item or two from the info above and work it into your statement. But, better to simply copy and paste then to write nothing at all. Pick any or all of the following points.
I oppose the implementation of demand-response electricity programs in Michigan.
Time-of-use programs discriminate against people who must be at home during peak hours. This includes the elderly and the chronically ill. It also includes people with home businesses, of which there are an increasing number in Michigan.
Time-of-use programs will discriminate agains people with electro-hypersensitivity. These people cannot use smart-chipped appliances.
The demand-response programs will discriminate against people with low incomes. They cannot afford to buy appliances that they can set to run at any time of the day or night.
The demand-response programs put additional load on the servers used to run the computer networks of the utilities. “Most data centers . . . consume vast amounts of energy in an incongruously wasteful manner . . . . Online companies typically run their facilities at maximum capacity around the clock, whatever the demand. As a result, data centers can waste 90 percent or more of the electricity they pull off the grid.” Here is the place to start on reducing consumption. There are many others out there.” From a New York Times article.
If you want people to save energy, educate them on using less.
I am [elderly / chronically ill /must go to bed early] and will be forced to run my appliances mainly at peak times. I can’t afford this. Even if I could, it’s not fair.
Since when is it the utility’s business to turn off my appliances when they want to?
See what others have written at this link: http://efile.mpsc.state.mi.us/efile/viewcase.php?casenum=17936&submit.x=5&submit.y=10
Additional Info on the Peak Pricing Program
This info is taken from the MPSC.
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) reported that Michigan showed the highest potential of any state in the U.S. for reducing electricity demands at peak usage hours.
Demand-response technology is being proposed so utilities won't have to build new power plants to meet peak demand.
The MPSC recently directed Michigan’s largest utilities to engage in enhanced planning and marketing of demand response efforts. This is part of why you see DTE sending you bill inserts touting the use of the SmartApp that will tell you how much energy you are using. DTE is already instituting time-of-use rates. Right now they are voluntary. At some point, they won’t be. Peak rates in Oklahoma are 10 times normal rates.
Consumers describes the Peak Power Savers (PPS) and Dynamic Peak Pricing (DPP) programs, which the utility plans to make available to residential customers with advanced metering infrastructure (SMART) meters. These programs are based on results from pilots conducted in 2010. Consumers reports that PPS will be made available to customers sometime in 2016 and DPP in January 2017.
The MPSC will likely conduct a study on the potential to reduce electric consumption and peak demand through the implementation of demand-response (DR), a.k.a., time-of-use rate, technologies and practices. The MPSC Staff shall coordinate with the Michigan Agency for Energy, regulated utilities, and other stakeholders to examine funding options, cost estimates, timing, and scope, and shall report back to the Commission no later than September 29, 2016.
See this link for the MPSC’s description of the cases: http://www.michigan.gov/som/0,4669,7-192-47796-380744--,00.html
See this link for the case itself: http://www.dleg.state.mi.us/mpsc/orders/electric/2016/u-