Examining Potential for Prepay as an Energy Efficiency Program in Minnesota

Although prepaid electricity is common in some regions of the world, it is relatively new to the US. But there is a growing interest in finding out whether paying for your electricity use in advance would change or reduce your overall consumption. Could an energy efficiency program capture energy savings simply by changing when you pay your bill from after use to before? Initial evidence suggests yes, but there are a lot of unanswered questions. Slipstream, along with the lead researchers at ACEEE, investigated prepay programs as part of a Minnesota CARD grant. The goal of the research was to understand the effect that prepay programs might have on people’s consumption of energy and provide recommendations for next steps for Minnesota to take if they want to include prepay programs as part of their Conservation Improvement Program