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Intraclass Price Elasticity & Electric Rate Design
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Electric rate design relies on cost incurrance for pricing and pricing structures. However, as utilities move into a marketing mode, rate design needs to respond more to customer reactions to pricing changes. Intraclass price elasticities aid rate designers by estimating customer behavior to change. Intraclass price elasticities vary with customer usage. The more energy used by a customer, the greater the amount of elasticity. For an industrial customer, this means that all energy consumed up to the amount necessary for base operations is relatively inelastic. All energy consumption beyond this becomes more elastic as usage increases. In the book "Innovative Electric Rates," John Chamberlin and Charles Dickson utilize an economic model to test conservation programs. This model utilizes intraclass price elasticities and has a direct use in current electric rate design. The model is a strong indicator of how best a company's electric prices and pricing structures manage demand-side growth, increase energy sales consumption, and aide in non-discriminatory economic development.
Gresham, K. E. (1987). Intraclass Price Elasticity & Electric Rate Design. Energy Systems Laboratory (http://esl.eslwin.tamu.edu). Available electronically from