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Santee Electric Cooperative announces new program

SEC announces new program

Article was added on Thursday, January 26, 2017

Santee Electric Cooperative recently announced the start of its Beat the Peak program, a free and voluntary effort to help control energy costs for all cooperative members.

Through Beat the Peak, members of the co-op can sign-up to receive alerts asking them to reduce their energy usage during critical periods when wholesale electricity prices spike. These times, known in the industry as "peaks," are when demand for electricity is the highest, usually on summer afternoons and winter mornings. Like most commodities, when the demand for electricity rises, so do the costs.  When the cooperative purchases large amounts of energy during these peak periods over the course of a year, the electricity rates the co-op and its member-owners pay can be adversely affected.

"The idea behind Beat the Peak is to shift energy consumption from times when demand is highest," said Rob Ardis, president and CEO of Santee Electric Cooperative. "Potentially, this effort can save the cooperative and its member-owners significant money over time by keeping the wholesale power costs low and stable. We're excited about the program and the opportunity to work together with our member-owners to keep the cost of power affordable for everyone."

When Santee Electric Cooperative staff determines a peak energy use period is coming, the co-op will issue a Beat the Peak alert to program participants. Members will have selected to receive the alerts by text messages, emails or phone calls. Santee Electric Cooperative will also alert members through social media.

During a Beat the Peak period, Santee Electric Cooperative members are encouraged to use power wisely until the peak demand falls. These are a few of the actions members can take to help reduce use:

  • Adjusting thermostats by 3 degrees - moving higher during summer afternoons and evenings and lower during mornings in the winter

  • Delay certain activities that require hot water, such as washing clothes, taking showers, or washing dishes.

  • Postpone using heavy appliances, like dryers and ovens.

 "The important thing is that we are not asking our member-owners to altogether stop using certain appliances," Ardis said. "We want to get them to consider shifting their usages to different hours of the day to help hold down everyone's costs. If we can work together, It's a win-win for everybody."

To sign up for alerts, go to 

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