Members will soon see a line item on their electric bill called “demand charge.”
Demand charge is based on each member’s maximum “demand” put on the cooperative’s distribution system. The amount of electricity you consume in a month is measured in kilowatt hours (KWH), while “demand” is measured in kilowatts (kW). The max demand is the highest energy used in a 15 minute period over a month. That means the 15 minute interval that your business or residence is consuming (or “demanding”) the most electricity, in a given month, establishes your demand for the month. The demand charge line item will have a date and time stamp of when it occurred for your service, with a zero charge.
Demand is a key component in Riverland’s wholesale power costs. The ability for the membership to recognize what demand is and how it can be reduced will help Riverland control wholesale power costs. It is important to understand that demand isn’t necessarily about how much energy you use, but how and when you use it over the course of a month. For instance, a typical residence can control demand by turning off the air conditioner while doing laundry. By not allowing the A/C to run at the same time as the electric water heater and/or electric dryer you are reducing your demand.
You should see this added to your statements in February or March. For now, it will be a zero charge, but could be a charge in the future. If you have any questions, feel free to call and ask for our Energy Services department.