Why is there a Service Availability Charge even when I don’t use any electricity?

The Service Availability Charge is the price you pay for instant, on-demand access to power, regardless of how much you actually use. This charge is critical because it covers the fixed costs of providing service to our members, such as the cost of maintaining and operating the distribution system. These costs are incurred regardless of how much electricity a member uses, and a fixed charge ensures these costs are covered even if a customer uses little or no electricity.

This is increasingly important as technologies such as home solar become more widespread. Members with home generation use fewer kWh per month, but because solar and wind are intermittent, these members still need uninterrupted access to electricity from our system. Having an appropriate Service Availability Charge helps us ensure we can maintain our distribution system even if an increasing number of members buy fewer kWh from us.