SEATTLE – Seattle City Light customers started receiving some of the early benefits of Advanced Metering today after computer programming was completed to enable the utility’s billing system to receive electricity use data directly.
Connecting Advanced Metering data to City Light’s billing system eliminates several manual processes that create the potential for errors. It also enables customer service representatives to provide customers with current account balances, eliminates estimated bills that are created when a meter can’t be read and speeds the process for transferring or closing an account.
“Improving service for our customers while increasing our efficiency is one of the key reasons we are upgrading to Advanced Metering,” Customer Service Director Kelly Enright said. “Today is just the start. As we move forward, we will continue to put more power in our customers’ hands to better manage their bills and make informed choices about their energy use.”
City Light has installed about 200,000 advanced meters and expects to upgrade the remaining meters in its service territory by the end of the year.
As additional computer systems are connected to Advanced Metering data, the program will support automated power outage reporting and an online portal that will allow customers to check their energy usage and costs whenever they want.
Additionally, the transition to Advanced Metering will eliminate about 200,000 miles of driving and 72 tons of carbon emissions.
Over the next 15 years, Advanced Metering is expected to pay for the cost of the program and save City Light’s customer-owners about $30 million.
You can learn more about the program at www.seattle.gov/light/meters .