- Louisville Gas and Electric Company and Kentucky Utilities Company is requesting approval from the Kentucky Public Service Commission for a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity (CPCN) to install nearly 1.3 million advanced meters across the utilities’ service territories.
- The utilities are proposing to invest about $350 million over a three-year period to fully deploy Advanced Meter Service (AMS) to its electric and natural gas customers. Based on LG&E and KU’s research and analyses, implementing AMS will provide nearly $970 million in evaluated benefits, over the life of the project, ultimately resulting in a net savings to customers.
- The utilities’ request, which was filed in January, followed two decades of study by LG&E and KU to gain experience on the technology’s capabilities as well as the completion a four month AMS Collaborative. The collaborative group, which was formed by the utilities, included representatives from low-income groups, the Kentucky Attorney General’s office, Kentucky Industrial Utility Customers, the Kentucky School Boards Association, Louisville Metro Government, Lexington-Fayette County Government and the Sierra Club. The AMS Collaborative met monthly from July through November 2017 to address questions and concerns related to the technology.
- Advanced meters — sometimes referred to as “smart” meters — are electronic meters that transmit customer usage data as well as alerts and other energy data related to outages and power quality over a wireless communication network to a utility company.
- LG&E and KU’s stringent data security practices used to protect the safety and security of customers’ information also apply to AMS. Information from advanced meters is encrypted and only available to the customer and authorized LG&E and KU employees as needed for information related to maintenance, billing and customer service.
- Customer benefits associated with AMS include:
- Advanced meters offer customers energy usage information through a user-friendly online dashboard that provides insights into their energy consumption. The additional information gives customers the data to make decisions which can save them money.
- Advanced meters allow utilities to better determine where outages are occurring, quickly diagnose the cause of the outage and, at times, respond more efficiently. In fact, power can sometimes be restored even before a customer reports an outage.
- The meters also provide streamlined meter-related processes and establish a foundation for a stronger energy grid, especially when combined with other automated technology.
- Under the filing, customers not interested in receiving the technology can elect to opt-out of the service, for a fee. These fees are designed to cover the incremental costs associated with maintaining opt-out customers’ legacy meters which the utilities’ would otherwise not incur.
Proposed AMS opt-out costs
- LG&E customers:
Electric — $57.86 setup fee; $22.70 recurring monthly fee
Gas — $57.86 setup fee; $21.80 recurring monthly fee
- KU customers:
$72.71 setup fee; $32.45 recurring monthly fee
- If approved, the utilities would begin implementing the technology later this year and deploying meters in 2019.
- Visit lge-ku.com/advanced-meters for more information on AMS.