How Demand Response Works: Author’s Note

Writing about demand response meant more than learning about consumer energy demands -- it meant learning about the power grid, how the grid responds to consumer consumption and how it could respond if it were a bit smarter. The current power grid, it turns out, is not smart, nor is it big into communication. Demand response is a way for consumers to make smarter decisions about energy consumption, as well as for the grid to do the same. A smart grid could tell you that you're using your dishwasher at a peak energy usage time and if you wait a few hours there will be less demand. A smart grid could also be able to shift power from one source to another to avoid energy depletions that cause brownouts and blackouts. A smart grid could also be a green grid, balancing energy output from fossil fuel-driven power generators and renewable energy sources. Why haven't we implemented this?

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