DSM stands for Demand Side Management. To our customers, DSM means managing the need for energy from the customer side of the meter. It also means promoting ways for customers to use less energy and ways in which Avista generates energy, through better equipment and processes. DSM also involves much, much more. It’s how we plan, implement, measure and monitor energy consumption as a way to ensure we’re using it as wisely as we can.
Because the electricity we generate cannot be stored, we work to continually balance the supply of energy with the demand for energy. On particularly hot or cold days, when energy use peaks, energy efficiency can make a difference. Managing the demand for energy can be complicated, especially in an age where we rely on more power than ever before to run our cell phones, iPods, electric cars and more. When it comes to DSM, there's a lot of information out there. We invite you to learn more.
Customers benefit by using less energy and that also helps us manage our costs for providing energy to customers. Just think about it—population growth, combined with increased electric usage in our homes and businesses means more energy is needed. We used to meet this need with 100% low-cost renewable hydropower. But as usage has increased over time, we’ve needed to build or purchase new sources of power which are more expensive.
At Avista, we make choices everyday about the best and most affordable source of power to deliver to our customers. Energy efficiency gives us one more choice—and one that is lower cost. In fact, energy efficiency is the lowest cost “new” resource available. Helping our customers reduce their energy use costs only 2 cents to 3 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh). Compare that amount to 5 cents to 11 cents for purchasing or generating new power to meet customer needs.
Plus, energy efficiency helps customers reduce their energy use during a time when energy costs continue to rise. Long-term, using less energy helps customers by allowing us to delay building or acquiring more expensive generation. And, using our resources wisely has a positive impact on our community and on our environment.