Milton, ON, Canada --- (METERING.COM) --- July 3, 2007 – Canadian utility Milton Hydro will trial a new residential two-way broadband demand response system from Bell Canada, in yet another initiative to achieve energy conservation targets in the province.

The drive towards energy efficiency and the creation of a conservation culture in Ontario have been well documented, with the immediate goals being a 5 per cent reduction in electricity demand and the installation of 800,000 smart meters by end 2007. Many utilities are offering customers a variety of demand response programs, in an effort to encourage customers to use more power during off-peak hours.

One commonly used program – which is supported by the Ontario Power Authority – is the Peaksaver, which allows utilities to control appliances such as air conditioners remotely. Peaksaver communicates over a one-way paging network, and Milton Hydro is keen to evaluate the benefits of the two-way communication system, which will allow both residential and commercial customers to remotely control lights and appliances themselves, or let the utility do it for them in certain specified circumstances.

The trial of the new system, which was designed for Bell by Toronto-based Lixar SRS Inc., has been approved by the Ontario Power Authority. Devices will be installed in some 1700 homes in Milton Hydro’s territory.