Demand side management (DSM)
Our Power Smart initiative includes energy conservation and efficiency activities designed to manage the demand for energy (demand side management or DSM). Power Smart:
- helps the corporation meet the province’s energy needs in a more sustainable manner;
- assists customers to use energy more efficiently and to reduce their energy bills.
Our Power Smart programs have invested more than $643 million in incentives, information, and market-based programs for residential, commercial, and industrial customers since 1989.
In a single year (2015–16), our customers reduced their electricity needs by 346 GWh, saving over $81 million on their electricity bills. Customers also reduced their natural gas needs by 9.5 million cubic metres, saving more than $34 million on their natural gas bills.
These reductions in domestic demand have contributed to electricity surpluses, which have been sold on the export market to support lower domestic rates for Manitoba consumers, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and defer the need for new Manitoba resources. The reduction of natural gas demand has reduced the amount of natural gas imported into the province.
Our Power Smart programs have increased our customers’ use of energy-saving technologies, providing opportunities for Manitoba businesses to develop new products and services and become more competitive in the global marketplace.
We pursue all economic Power Smart opportunities for the benefit of our rate payers and the environment. The 2016–17 Demand Side Management Plan targets additional electricity savings of 359 GWh and 204 MW, as well as 8.8 million cubic meters of natural gas.
Even with a successful Power Smart initiative, Manitoba’s domestic energy consumption has grown, on average, at an annual rate of 1.2 per cent over the past 10 years. Energy consumption is expected to continue to grow in the province due to a growing population and growth in business activities.
With energy conservation efforts, natural gas demand in Manitoba has remained relatively constant.