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BGE, SDG&E, iControl Networks Commit to Green Button Initiative

Software company iControl Networks and utilities Baltimore Gas and Electric Company (BGE) and San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) have made new commitments to helping US businesses and residences monitor their energy use through the White House’s Green Button initiative.

BGE and SDG&E will both use the Green Button Connect My Data platform, which allows customers to download their own household energy data from participating utilities. Customers can then choose to provide their usage information to third parties such as energy suppliers and other energy service companies, to be matched with programs that can help them reduce their energy costs.

SDG&E’s PowerTools app, created by Candi Controls, will be available this month for the utility’s 3.4 million customers to view their energy use information and find ways to save energy. Initially available for web browsers and mobile tablets, the app will soon also be available for additional platforms including mobile phones and third-party platforms such as Facebook, the utility company says.

The app provides customers historical usage analysis, overview of actual use and savings relative to history, phantom power load calculation, environmental impact, ability to choose and track energy saving goals, utility bill payment, current and historic local weather related to energy usage, and social network goal- and success-sharing.

Also this month, BGE will launch an online suite of tools that incorporate the Green Button concept, according to the utility. BGE, which delivers power to more than 1.2 million electric customers and more than 650,000 natural gas customers in central Maryland, says it will work with industry partners to incorporate the Green Button Connect My Data functionality in the near future.

Meanwhile, iControl Networks has announced that its OpenHome software platform will enable home security and broadband service providers to integrate Green Button energy usage data into their individual service offerings.

Most than 30 million US households and businesses have secure, easy-to-understand electronic information about their energy use through the Green Button program, according to the White House.

In May, Melon, an app that simplifies the process of getting an Energy Star benchmark for a commercial building, was one of the big winners in the US government’s Energy for Apps competition. The contest was launched this spring to challenge software developers to build apps for mobile phones, computers and tablets based on Green Button data.



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