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ITRC Paper No. P 02-002.  Charles Burt, Ricardo Amon, and Darren Cordova

Electric Load Shifting in Irrigation Districts — California's Program

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During the 2000-2001 winter, California experienced a severe imbalance in electricity supply and demand that resulted in blackouts and brownouts.  The state legislature initiated a number of emergency programs, one of which (Senate Bill 5x) was targeted for irrigation districts.  The primary goal of SB 5x is to reduce peak period electricity demand.  The California Energy Commission (CEC), acting under authority of Section 5(b) of the legislation, developed the Agricultural Peak Load Reduction Program.  The program was announced on June 1, 2001, and Cal Poly ITRC administers the irrigation district portion of the program for CEC.  During the first 9 months of implementation, the irrigation districts voluntarily participated in load shifting, utilizing approximately $6.2 million in cost-sharing grant money.  In addition, approximately 550 pumps were tested and pump repairs were made, resulting in an estimated savings of 16 million kWh.


Burt, C.M., R. Amon, and D. Cordova 2002.¬†Electric Load Shifting in Irrigation Districts — California's Program.¬†Presented at Irrigation Association 28th Annual International Irrigation Show.  San Diego, CA.  December 9, 2007. 10 pp.

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