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Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor

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Core Programs | Oversight | Ongoing Proceedings


Indiana's five investor-owned electric utilities are offering five core energy efficiency programs under the Energizing Indiana initiative. Energizing Indiana - a statewide collaborative including the Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor (OUCC), other consumer organizations, and utilities - was launched on January 2, 2012. Program participation is voluntary and there are no charges to sign up. However, by law, the initiative will conclude at the end of 2014.

In an order issued on December 9, 2009, the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission (IURC) concluded a five-year investigation of DSM programs throughout the state, their overall effectiveness, and ways to possibly improve them. Since then, the OUCC and other stakeholders have worked aggressively with the state's electric utilities to implement a consistent approach to energy efficiency.

These efforts are known in the utility industry and in regulatory cases as demand side management (DSM) programs.

Core Programs

The IURC order (in Cause No. 42693) required all electric utilities under Commission jurisdiction to participate in the DSM efforts and achieve a two percent annual savings in total electric sales by 2019. The utilities also need to meet annual, incremental targets in the meantime.

The five core programs required in the order are:

  • Residential lighting program (focusing on incentives for Energy Star-qualified lighting)

  • Home energy audit program (on-site, walk-through home energy audits with recommendations for reducing energy and installing low-cost efficiency measures - such as compact fluorescent light bulbs, low-flow showerheads, and draft shields for electric outlets - for customers who are interested)

  • Low income weatherization program (comprehensive energy efficiency upgrades for income-eligible homes)

  • Energy efficient schools program (energy efficiency kits and education for K-12 students, along with energy audits of school buildings)

  • Commercial and industrial program (including incentives for lighting, HVAC equipment, high-efficiency motors and other energy-saving technologies)

While the participating utilities are required to offer the core programs, customer participation is voluntary.

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Oversight

Independent third-party administrators are overseeing the programs and measuring their effectiveness.

The OUCC and all other members of the DSM coordination committee established under the 2009 order developed two requests for proposals (RFPs) for consideration by the IURC - one for an independent third-party administrator to oversee and coordinate the core programs and a second RFP for a third party administrator to evaluate, measure and verify the programs offered by the utilities.

The coordination committee includes:

  • The OUCC
  • Citizens Action Coalition of Indiana (CAC)
  • Indiana Industrial Group
  • Duke Energy Indiana
  • Indiana Michigan Power (I&M)
  • Indiana Municipal Power Agency (IMPA)
  • Indianapolis Power & Light Co. (IPL)
  • Northern Indiana Public Service Company (NIPSCO)
  • Vectren Energy Delivery

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Ongoing proceedings

A law approved during the Indiana General Assembly’s 2014 session (Senate Enrolled Act 340) will end the Energizing Indiana initiative by December 31, 2014. The law requires the IURC to conduct a comprehensive study of energy efficiency, and to present the study to the state legislature by August 15, 2014.

All five Indiana investor owned electric utilities have filed separate requests that would extend their respective energy efficiency programs, including ratepayer cost recovery, for another year:

  • Duke Energy: IURC Cause No. 43955 DSM-02
    The OUCC anticipates filing testimony on September 8, 2014.
  • Indiana Michigan Power (I&M): IURC Cause No. 44486 
    The OUCC's testimony is generally supportive of the utility's proposed programs while taking issue with its proposed cost recovery.
  • IPL: IURC Cause No. 44497
    The OUCC is scheduled to file testimony on August 22, 2014.
  • NIPSCO: IURC Cause No. 44496 
    The OUCC's testimony recommends approval of NIPSCO's request.
  • Vectren: IURC Cause No. 44495
    The OUCC and Vectren have reached a settlement agreement, with an evidentiary hearing scheduled for September 3, 2014.

In addition, IURC Cause No. 44441 is the Commission’s investigation “into the implementation of Senate Enrolled Act 340 with respect to the opt out of an industrial customer from a regulated electric utility energy efficiency program and other related matters.” The Commission issued its order on June 30, 2014. A separate phase of the case will also address related policy issues; the OUCC and other parties filed lists of proposed issues earlier this year.

To review filings in any of the cases, visit the IURC's electronic document system and enter the respective docket number.

 

This information will be updated as warranted.

8-18-14

 

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