Since deregulation, consumers have been spoilt for choice between different energy plans. Both electricity, and gas in some states, have been deregulated. However, our focus is on electricity. If you are still unsure what deregulation entails, read on to find out more.
The History of Deregulation
The process of deregulation dates back to the 1990s and the discussion is still ongoing in states such as Arizona, Virginia, and Nevada. American citizens can have a say in whether to deregulate their power supply, thus ending the monopoly of the utility over the service. It is not simple to decide, as evidenced by the numerous arguments for and against deregulation, which continue to this day in some states.
The Benefits of Deregulation
The core difference between regulation and deregulation is that a regulated electricity service allows for monopolies. On the other hand, a deregulated supply means that you can chose your service provider. In a deregulated market, there are numerous suppliers of electricity, and each has devised various plans so that consumers can choose the one most suited to their needs. Deregulation also encourages competition between different service providers so that the prices stay low, and you can benefit from this and a wide selection of plans in your area.
Regulated Markets for Electricity
Arizona is an example of a state that is still regulated in terms of electricity. Regulation limits the choices that you have in terms of your electricity provision. This applies to costs and the services provided and may hold disadvantages that you can do nothing about. There is no competition and little that you can do as a consumer or householder to keep costs low. A single provider also encourages inefficiencies.
A single power company holds all the cards. The regulated body is accountable for generating electricity according to their chosen methods and the placement and maintenance of the distribution lines coming from power stations to consumers’ homes or offices.
Deregulated Markets for Electricity
In a deregulated market for electricity, transmission and distribution remain separate from generation. The former (distribution and transmission) remains the domain of the electricity utility. As a consumer, you are free to elect to buy your power from any power company that serves your area. Your choice is between different pricing and strategy plans for your individual needs. Each household is unique and has its own requirements. For example, you can choose the best energy plan in Corpus Christi for your needs, as Texas is a deregulated state.
Commercial companies get a great advantage from deregulation. After shopping around for the best deal, they can sign contracts to benefit from their selection. This makes it easier to budget and manage.
One seldom-mentioned benefit of deregulation is that it encourages suppliers to discover new technologies that are more cost-effective, which translates to cheaper pricing plans for consumers. This may also take sustainable, green energy into account.
If you live in a deregulated state, you will be able to explore different energy plans.