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Shenandoah Valley Electric Cooperative (SVEC) announced today the roll out of its Beat the Peak program, a free and voluntary effort to help control energy costs for all cooperative members. The program begins on June 1.

Through Beat the Peak, SVEC member-owners can sign-up to receive alerts asking them to reduce their energy usage during key periods when wholesale electricity prices spike. These periods, known as “peaks,” are when demand for electricity is the highest, such as during some summer afternoons or winter nights. SVEC pays the highest rates for electricity during these peaks, and if too much electric energy is purchased at these peak rates over the course of a year, member-owner rates could be affected.

“The idea behind Beat the Peak is to shift energy consumption from times when demand is highest,” SVEC President and CEO Myron Rummel said. “This has the potential to save the Cooperative and its member-owners a lot of money over time as our wholesale power costs can be kept stable. We’re excited about implementing this program and having many of our member-owners collectively take part in keeping the cost of electricity affordable.”

When SVEC personnel determine that a peak energy usage period is coming, Beat the Peak alerts will be sent to participating member-owners through text messages, emails and over social media. Member-owners will be encouraged to reduce their energy usage, especially the use of:

– Heating and AC systems, including turning thermostats to 75 degrees or warmer during a warm weather peak.

– Activities that require hot water, such as washing clothes, taking showers, or washing dishes.

– Heavy appliances, including dryers and ovens.

“The important thing is that we are not asking our member-owners to altogether stop using certain appliances,” Rummel said. “We’re looking to get them to shift their usage to different hours of the day to help hold down everyone’s costs. It’s a win-win for everybody.”

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