Quantifying the time-varying value of energy efficiency is necessary to properly account for all of its benefits and costs and to identify and implement efficiency resources that contribute to a low-cost, reliable electric system. Historically, most quantification of the benefits of efficiency has focused largely on the economic value of annual energy reduction. Due to the lack of statistically representative metered end-use load shape data in Michigan (i.e., the hourly or seasonal timing of electricity savings), the ability to confidently characterize the time-varying value of energy efficiency savings in the state, especially for weather-sensitive measures such as central air conditioning, is limited. Still, electric utilities in Michigan can take advantage of opportunities to incorporate the time-varying value of efficiency into their planning. For example, end-use load research and hourly valuation of efficiency savings can be used for a variety of electricity planning functions, including load forecasting, demand-side management and evaluation, capacity planning, long-term resource planning, renewable energy integration, assessing potential grid modernization investments, establishing rates and pricing, and customer service (KEMA 2012). In addition, accurately calculating the time-varying value of efficiency may help energy efficiency program administrators prioritize existing offerings, set incentive or rebate levels that reflect the full value of efficiency, and design new programs.
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A webinar recorded on April 17, 2018, discussing this research can be found here.