Mandating utility competition: One option for promoting energy efficiency
In 1988, the Public Service Commission of Wis-consin (PSCW) authorized the Madison Gas and Electric Company (MGE) to encourage energy efficiency among its customers through the Energy Conservation Competition Pilot (the Competition). The two key objectives of the Competition were to motivate MGE to improve its conservation efforts in terms of both the quantity and cost-effectiveness of conservation achieved, and to provide an opportunity for energy service companies to design and implement innovative and competing programmes. The PSCW also approved this programme in order to test whether the Competition format was a regulatory strategy that should be used for other Wisconsin utilities for pursuing conservation. This paper presents key findings from the process evaluation of the Competition, so that other utilities and regulatory commissions can learn from this experience.