Johnson Consulting Group

Spring Edition 2009 
Happy Spring!

It's an exciting time to be in Washington D.C.  Not only is the best time to enjoy our nation's capital, but it is also a wonderful time to be involved in the energy efficiency industry. This was especially true at the 2009 National Symposium on Market Transformation held in Washington D.C. in late March. The Symposium focused on the wealth of new opportunities that will be available to energy organizations to promote energy efficiency technologies and programs to all customer groups.  
Johnson Consulting Group is busy working on a number of new and exciting projects promoting energy efficiency programs across the U.S. and Canada. These opportunities include helping utility staff learn more about ways to promote energy efficient technologies as well as continuing to work on energy efficient program design and evaluation.  We look forward to continuing to work with our clients during these exciting and challenging times.
                                                                            Katherine Johnson, President

Motors/VFD Workshop- A Roaring Success

More than 50 utility staff gathered in chilly Bismarck, ND for a day-long presentation on Demand-Side Management Technology Workshop on Motors and Variable Frequency Drives.  Developing an effective energy efficiency program targeting motors and related equipment, such as variable frequency drives, offers utilities a tremendous opportunity to reduce overall energy usage and for commercial, agricultural, and industrial customers to achieve lasting savings.  This workshop provided participants from energy organizations with:
  • Overview and demonstrations of current motors and VFDs technologies including definitions, guidelines, and examples
  • Introduction to the program planning and deployment materials available from the federal government to implement a successful motors program including the Motor Decisions Matter website.
  • Strategies to integrate these materials and to streamline the marketing, implementation, and tracking designs for these programs.
  • Integrate "carbon footprint" into overall program measurement and tracking 

The workshop was sponsored by Basin Electric, a generation and transmission cooperative utility, and Western Area Power Administration. Special thanks to the speakers who provided real world experience and advice to the workshop attendees:

  • Chad Reisenhauser, Basin Electric Power Cooperative  
  • Michael Radecki, Western Area Power Administration
  • Cory Fuehrer, Nebraska Public Power District
  • Dan Slottke, Precise Power Corporation
  • Dave La Brie,  Precise Power/Husker Power
  • Mark Tsatsos, Marathon Electric
  • Warren Bryan, L & S Electric                                              Link to workshop proceedings
Financial Challenges for Customers and Utilities 
The bleak economic outlook, rising energy costs, and a growing housing crisis have created a rising new customer group---struggling and at-risk customer utility customers.  As this group increases, the energy industry is facing a steady increase in customers with late payments, delinquencies, and an increasing number of whom cannot even pay the utility bill. This session will summarize the issue facing energy companies around the United States and also feature innovative and effective solutions utility companies are using to address this growing problem.   
Katherine Johnson, Johnson Consulting Group and Ed Thomas, Director,
together with utility representatives presented the findings from a new white paper that will be published by EEI/AGA. Katherine wrote the white paper, which outlines the scope of this issue and provides strategies and tactics that utilities can put in place to address this specific group in a comprehensive manner that will minimize revenue loss while enhancing customer satisfaction.
Link to view White Paper   

Katherine also authored four Utility Snapshotsfrom natural gas and electric utilities that are currently piloting new programs to meet the needs of this new customer group. These snapshots summarize the strategies used by:  
  • DTE Energies' innovative partnership with the local social service agencies to create a one-stop shop referral program for customers in need.
  • We Energies' pilot programs focusing on customer education and behavior change as a way to help reduce energy bills.
  • Integrys' proactive customer outreach program that identified "At-Risk" customers through data mining and provided information on energy assistance on in telephone calls, bill inserts, and online content. 
  • Kansas City Power & Light's innovative use of its call center representatives to identify "At-Risk" customers and offer timely assistance and advice.

Link to view Utility Snapshots

Geothermal Heat Pump Installations in Colorado

Tuesday, April 28, 2009; 2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. (Mountain)

The webinar co-presenters will be Katherine Johnson and Ed Thomas, formerly of Market Development Group.  They wrote the case studies under contract to the Colorado Governor's Energy Office.  Opening remarks will be provided by Joani Matranga of Colorado Governor's Energy Office with closing remarks by Paul Bony of ClimateMaster.
The cost for this webinar is underwritten by ClimateMaster. ClimateMaster is the leading manufacturer of water source and geothermal heat pumps for commercial, industrial and residential applications.  ClimateMaster's 387,000 square foot production facility, located in Oklahoma City, produces over 50,000 geothermal units per year using the most stringent quality control standards in the industry.
Geothermal heat pumps are the most energy efficient and environmentally friendly space conditioning and water heating product available on the market today. ClimateMaster geothermal heat pumps have been and remain the best total space conditioning alternative using a renewable energy resource for point of use energy reduction, peak load reduction, demand side management, customer bill savings and carbon emission reductions.  To learn more please visit

  Fun Stuff:

  Festival in

  Check out the
  following link to one
  of the most
  beautiful festivals
  in Washington DC
  (and one of our

Link to Festival information

Interest in Water Heater Programs Remain Strong -

Water heaters continue to gain momentum as utilities look for ways to encourage customers to reduce overall energy consumption. Johnson Consulting Group has just completed a case study on Georgia Power's successful program which targets both residential home owners as well as multi-family housing authorities. Georgia Power promoted its water heater program by focusing on the green benefits of using energy wisely as well as the benefits of installing a long-lasting Marathon water heater.  Link to view case study 

Katherine also just completed an article for Metering International called "A Comparison of Two Utility Approaches to Promote Water Heating Energy Efficiency."  The article, which will be published in the June 2009 issue summarizes the innovative marketing strategies taken by two utilities-Portland General Electric and Georgia Power-- to promote energy efficient water heating through early replacement programs.

In This Issue

Motors/VFD Workshop - A Roaring Success
Financial Challenges for Customers and Utilities
Webinar:...Geothermal Heat Pump Installations in Colorado
Interest in Water Heater Programs Remain Strong
Conference Update

Conference Update - Where in the World is KJ?

Katherine will moderate a session on AESP Implementation Conference in Charlotte, NC-  Session V: Residential Track
Featuring presentations by: 
  • A Smart Residential Pricing Program: Lessons Learned in a Real-Time Pricing Pilot
    presenters:  Neel Gulhar, Program Manager, BGE & Tom McMahon, Regional Director, Honeywell
  • Achieving Energy Savings in the Affordable Housing Market
    presenter: Arnie Katz, Director of Training and Sr. Building Science Consultant, Advanced Energy
  • That Old Fridge: Where Does it Go?
    John Reed, Principal/Owner, Innovologie

Katherine will attend the NRECA-Connect Conference in Las Vegas

Katherine will present twice at ECEEE in France, June 2009

  • "Breaking Down the Barriers to Efficiency Improvements in the Rental Housing Market: A Comparison of Two Utility Approaches"
  • "Best Practices for Developing Cost-Effective Evaluation, Measurement, and Verification Plans: Lessons Learned from 13 Northern California Municipal Utilities"

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