HOUSTON – May 29, 2015 – CenterPoint Energy announced today that the $3.05 monthly residential smart meter surcharge currently being recovered through a charge to retail electric providers (REPs) will end this month. CenterPoint Energy began installing and recovering the cost for its advanced metering system (AMS) through a monthly surcharge to all REPs beginning in early 2009.
“Through these advancements in smart grid technology we have seen significant improvement in reliability and are able to provide better service to electric consumers. We are proud to be a leader in deploying this transformational technology,” said Kenny Mercado, senior vice president of Electric Operations for CenterPoint Energy.
CenterPoint Energy was one of only six utilities awarded the maximum $200 million Smart Grid Investment Grant from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), which allowed the company to accelerate its smart meter deployment and launch the intelligent grid (IG) implementation; the grant also helped reduce the duration of the smart meter surcharge.
“We are very pleased that the DOE helped fund our smart meter deployment and the development of the intelligent grid reducing the amount that Houston-area electric consumers paid for this significant upgrade,” Mercado added.
Since beginning the smart meter deployment in 2009, and beginning construction of the Intelligent Grid in 2010, CenterPoint Energy has achieved several notable milestones including:
- Executing more than 11 million electronic service orders (e.g. turn on/off service), resulting in:
- Vehicle fuel savings of more than 1 million gallons
- Avoidance of more than 9,300 metric tons of CO2 emissions,
- Annual consumer savings of approximately $25 million through the elimination of service fees
- Restoring power to nearly 1.2 million customers without a phone call
- Avoiding more than 102 million customer outage minutes and
- Improving power reliability by 28 percent in 2014 where IG technology has been deployed.
Enabled by the more than 2.3 million smart meters throughout the company’s 5,000-square-mile service territory, consumers enrolled in Power Alert Service benefit by receiving automated alerts by text, email and/or phone call about an outage, including the cause, an estimated restoration time and confirmation when power has been restored. Consumers are encouraged to enroll by visiting CenterPointEnergy/PowerAlertService.
CenterPoint Energy, Inc., headquartered in Houston, Texas, is a domestic energy delivery company that includes electric transmission & distribution, natural gas distribution and energy services operations. The company serves more than five million metered customers primarily in Arkansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Texas. The company also owns a 55.4 percent limited partner interest in Enable Midstream Partners, a publicly traded master limited partnership it jointly controls with OGE Energy Corp., which owns, operates and develops natural gas and crude oil infrastructure assets. With more than 7,400 employees, CenterPoint Energy and its predecessor companies have been in business for more than 140 years. For more information, visit the website at www.CenterPointEnergy.com.