Con Edison's voluntary time-of-use electricity program  is regaining steam. The 3-decade-old program, which encourages customers to reduce electricity use between the peak hours of 10AM and 10PM, looks admirable to New Yorkers who are expected to see their electricity bills skyrocket from what it was this time last year.
Time-of-use costumers will have a new meter installed that measures specific electricity usuage during time periods. Off-peak usage pricing will be 80 percent less than on a regular pricing plan.
However, the program could use a tune-up, say officials, who estimate that the rates for usage during the peak time could make the program even more expensive than the alternative. If a user happens to turn the air-conditioner on during the peak hours, he can expect the electricity bill to be at least three times more. Instead, officials encourage Con Edison to invest in "smart meters", a measuring system that would trim electricity bills by at least ten percent during all time periods.
"Con Ed is relying on 19th-century technology to provide power to a 21st-century city," Councilman Eric Gioia told The New York Times .