We want to offer New Brunswickers the best possible products and services. That’s why we’re currently conducting exciting pilot projects to help us find products and programs that will help lower our customers’ bills as well as electricity demand.
These projects allow us to test technology that will allow us to shift the amount of electricity being used by New Brunswick homes and businesses to times of the day when demand isn’t so high. This shift will allow us to avoid using expensive fossil fuels to generate power to meet these periods of peak demand, provide low and stable rates for our customers, help them to reduce their power consumption with potential savings on their bills while playing a key role in reducing New Brunswick’s environmental footprint.
First Nation direct install pilot program
This program aims to help NB Power contribute to First Nations communities environmental stewardship by installing energy-efficient products in First Nations communities across NB. By focusing on homes with high energy bills, the goal is to help increase efficiency of homes for future generations. This project will initially see the installation of energy efficient devices in approximately 130 homes in participating First Nations communities across New Brunswick to determine the potential to expand the program in the future.
We’ve partnered with the National Research Council and Siemens Canada to see how we can ‘beat the peak’ and avoid a big surge in electricity demand on winter mornings in New Brunswick by using smart thermostats. Reducing the peak helps reduce or eliminate the need to burn fossil fuels to generate electricity to help make New Brunswick greener.
From January to March 2016, the beginning phase of research was conducted with 50 participants in the Greater Fredericton area with a goal of shifting 400 KW of energy – this is equal to more than 20,000 hours of brightness from a high-efficiency ENERGY STAR LED light bulb. The research concluded at the end of March 2016.
We are expanding the research pool to include 600 customers from the Greater Fredericton, Greater Moncton, Kennebecasis Valley and Grand- Bay Westfield to participate in research this winter.
Visit our smart thermostat page to find out how to participate in this first-of-its kind research project.
Smart water heaters
Heating water during the night when there is low demand for energy is the way to avoid peaks in the morning and evening. NB Power’s Smart Water Heater pilot involves currently 64 participants and will continue until the end of August 2016. As of the beginning of March, about 63 KW of energy was shifted, which equals about 21 hours of heating a 40 gallon water heater.
These water heaters are new to the market and allow the tanks to heat up during off peak hours. This enables customer to continue to enjoy nice hot showers when they need it, while helping to reduce their carbon footprint by shifting when their water heats up.
Commercial Demand Side Management
Research has shown that commercial buildings can be operated during the heating season in a manner that reduces peak energy demand while having a neutral impact on energy consumption. With this pilot, NB Power is looking to implement a shifting strategy to reduce our overall consumption during peak hours on winter mornings by focusing on larger, commercial customers and identifying opportunities to shift their energy use to off-peak hours.
Five participants in 12 different locations across the province are participating in this pilot program and about 1,510 KW were shifted, the amount of electricity needed to run a dishwasher with wash and dry cycle for about 1,048 hours.