Direct Energy Business

Direct Energy Business

September 24, 2009 08:00 ET

Exhibition Place Benefits From Ontario's First Demand Response Event of 2009

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Sept. 24, 2009) - On June 25, 2009, Exhibition Place reduced its electricity demand by 1.6 MW for four hours as a participant in the Ontario Power Authority's (OPA) Demand Response 3 (DR3) program. Working with Direct Energy Business, Exhibition Place stands to earn in excess of $150,000 for annual participation in the program and an additional $1,000 for each event called during 2009.

The DR3 program rewards commercial, industrial and institutional electricity users who temporarily reduce their peak electricity usage when the Ontario electricity grid is stressed. Not to be confused with energy conservation practices, the DR3 program compensates contributors both for having their loads available to the program during peak hours and reducing electricity usage when called upon by the OPA.

The goal of the DR3 program is to ensure the long-term reliability and sustainability of the electricity supply in Ontario. Participating businesses receive approximately 80% of their revenue for being on standby status with remaining payments realized when an event is called. The current DR3 enrollment period ends December 1, 2009. Companies enrolling after that date may be subject to a different payment structure.

"The revenue generated by our DR3 standby status will be reinvested into achieving Exhibition Place environmental initiatives, with the goal of achieving net energy self sufficiency by 2010. There are months when we are not called to reduce load, and we will still receive the availability payment - June 25 marked our first call for an event. The program aligns with our energy strategy and complements energy efficiency measures we have implemented elsewhere," said Dianne Young, Chief Executive Officer, Exhibition Place.

To participate in the OPA DR3 program, Exhibition Place - and all other businesses participating - must be able to commit a minimum load reduction of 5 MW. Most businesses - such as Exhibition Place - can curtail but only at levels below 5 MW and, therefore, must enroll through a demand response provider, otherwise referred to as an aggregator, such as Direct Energy.

"The OPA DR3 program is ideal for municipalities and businesses who are taking proactive steps towards becoming more environmentally conscious. Revenue received from participation in the DR3 program can be reinvested into energy conservation or building automation upgrades which also contribute towards the bottom line of any operating budget," said John Lambert, Senior Business Development Manager, Direct Energy Business Solutions.

About Exhibition Place

Exhibition Place is Canada's largest entertainment venue, attracting over 5.3 million visitors a year. The 192-acre site is an integral component of Toronto and Ontario's economy, particularly with respect to sport, festivals, recreation, culture and tourism. Located at Exhibition Place is the award-winning Direct Energy Centre, Canada's largest exhibition and convention centre, and the new Allstream Centre conference venue opening in October 2009. Since 2004, Exhibition Place has undertaken an environmental stewardship initiative, entitled GREENSmart; which includes the promotion of sustainable development, environmental initiatives and leading edge green technologies and practices across the site. Our environmental initiatives have resulted in award winning recognition across North America, and have established Exhibition Place as a world leader in energy-efficient technologies. Exhibition Place is a proud member of the Ontario's Environmental Leaders (Leaders) Program. www.explace.on.ca.

About Direct Energy Business

Direct Energy Business is one of North America's largest commercial retail energy suppliers and a Direct Energy company. With more than 20 years of industry experience, Direct Energy Business is dedicated to helping customers make cost-effective choices for their electricity and natural gas requirements. Headquartered in Pittsburgh, PA, Direct Energy Business serves nearly 50,000 customers in 14 states, the District of Columbia and five Canadian provinces. Direct Energy is wholly owned by Centrica plc. (LSE:CNA), one of the world's leading integrated energy companies. To learn more, visit www.directenergybusiness.com.

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