News Releases

PGE Moves Forward on Smart Meter Installation Territory-Wide

Successfully Completes System Testing Installing Thousands of Meters

PORTLAND, Ore., Apr 15, 2009 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Portland General Electric Company (PGE) (NYSE:POR) will begin rolling out more than 800,000 "smart meters" across its 4,000-square-mile service area this week after successfully completing its smart metering systems testing program.

The next-generation electrical meters, which will be read remotely by PGE, will help the utility and its customers manage energy use, as well as enhance customer service and reduce operating expenses.

PGE began installing smart meters last year in selected test neighborhoods -- urban and rural --before rolling them out territory-wide. The rest of the smart meters will be installed in an 18-month process slated for completion by late 2010.

"Systems testing went well and we are moving forward to complete the installation of smart meters for all of our customers," said Jim Piro, president and CEO of PGE. "Smart meters will allow us to offer our customers better service and reduce our operating costs. Smart meters are also the foundation for future 'smart grid' and 'smart home' technology necessary to meet our customers' future energy needs."

The new meters, which communicate over a wireless network much like a cell phone system, will provide PGE with two-way communications to its residential and commercial meters, enabling many customer benefits:

  • Cost savings: PGEanticipates millions in operational cost savings per year once the system is fully up and running, saving customers at least $34 million (net present value) over the next 20 years.
  • Environmental benefits: Fewer meter-reading vehicles will eliminate 1.2 million miles of driving, save 80,000 gallons of gasoline and reduce CO2 emissions by 1.5 million pounds every year.
  • Helps customers save energy: Within the next year, customers with smart meters will be able to access detailed information online or via customer service about their power consumption, allowing them to see how their activities affect power usage and develop strategies to use energy wisely. Customers will also have the ability to pick a preferred bill due date.
  • Speeds power restoration: In the future, PGE will be able to respond to power outages faster through information received via the smart metering system. The new meters will be able to tell PGE if a customer is experiencing a power outage, helping PGE dispatch repair crews more efficiently and restore service faster.
  • Future demand response programs: The new system is also expected to support the future development of such programs as demand response -- a pricing structure program that encourages customers to use energy at less expensive times of the day, when the peak demand is lower; and direct load control programs -- a program in which customers would agree to permit the utility to turn off certain appliances for limited periods when demand is high. These types of programs will reduce the need for new generation resources to meet peak demand.

The capital cost of the project is expected to be $130-135 million. The smart metering system, also known as advanced metering infrastructure (AMI), was purchased from Sensus Metering. Residential and smaller business customer meters will be installed by Wellington Energy, PGE's contract meter installer. PGE's meter services will install meters for PGE's mid-sized to large commercial customers.

For more information about the smart meter program, including an installation schedule, visit

About Portland General Electric Company

Portland General Electric, headquartered in Portland, Ore., is a vertically integrated electric utility that serves approximately 810,000 residential, commercial and industrial customers in Oregon. Visit our Web site at

Safe Harbor Statement

Statements in this news release that relate to future plans, objectives, expectations, performance, events and the like may constitute "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Such forward-looking statements include statements concerning the future installation, deployment and operation of the smart metering system, the expected performance and benefits of the system, the expected capital cost of the system, as well as other statements identified by words including, but not limited to, "will," "anticipates," "believes," "intends," "estimates," "promises," "expects," "should," "conditioned upon" and similar expressions. Investors are cautioned that any such forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties, including regulatory, operational and legal matters, as well as other factors that could affect the deployment and successful operation of AMI. As a result, actual results may differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements. All forward-looking statements included in this news release are based on information available to the Company on the date hereof and such statements speak only as of the date hereof. The Company assumes no obligation to update any such forward-looking statements. Prospective investors should also review the risks and uncertainties listed in the Company's most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and the Company's reports on Forms 8-K and 10-Q filed with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission, including Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operation and the risks described therein from time to time.


Source: Portland General Electric Company

SOURCE: Portland General Electric Company

Brianne Hyder, 503-464-8442

Copyright Business Wire 2009


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