Answers to Frequently Asked Questions
To summarize this Electricity 101 presentation, we have answered some common questions asked by site selectors and business customers.
- What are some basic principles I need to understand?What are some basic principles I need to understand? You should have a basic understanding of how the power system works, the different methods of obtaining service, any bargaining limitations in the region − such as regulatory constraints − and energy costs trends and the causes of upward pressures on rates.
- What information does a utility need to know from a customer?What information does a utility need to know from a customer? At a minimum, you should provide the utility with the kilowatt demand, kilowatt-hour consumption, voltage requirements and hours of operation.
- Is there a simple way to calculate rates?Is there a simple way to calculate rates? No. There are often numerous rate options for commercial and industrial service − and rates vary broadly even within the same geographical region. Obtaining the best rate depends upon many factors. Work with your utility representative to obtain the latest rate information.
- How are rate “riders” used?How are rate “riders” used? A rate rider is an addendum to a standard rate and typically offers special incentives to enhance development within a state. For example: Duke Energy’s “Economic Development Rider” gives discounts to large customers during early years. Your utility economic developer can help determine applicability of each rider and what cost saving opportunities are available.
- What should a consultant or customer ask of a utility?What should a consultant or customer ask of a utility? The more questions you ask the utility the better information you can provide to the end-use customer.
• What is the estimated cost (given known information)?
• Can reliable service be provided at the site?
• What is the reliability history of the general location?
• Are there any additional costs for the level of service required?
• How long will it take to get service?
• How will the customer interact with the utility?
• What other services (back up generation, power quality services, energy efficiency services, etc.) can be provided?