Unitil, a public utility holding company provides electric and natural gas distribution services to approximately 170,000 customers in the states of New Hampshire and Massachusetts and Maine[1, 2]. Unitil is the parent company of three distribution utilities: (i) Unitil Energy Systems, Inc., which provides electric service in the southeastern seacoast and state capital regions of New Hampshire; (ii) Fitchburg Gas and Electric Light Company, which provides both electric and natural gas service in the greater Fitchburg area of north central Massachusetts; and (iii) Northern Utilities, Inc. Together, Unitil’s operating utilities serve approximately 100,300 electric customers and 69,300 natural gas customers .
Unitil has submitted the petition for approval of a smart grid pilot program in April 2010 . "Unitil proposes to conduct its smart grid pilot program during June, July and August of 2010 (Exh. Unitil-1, at 11). Unitil’s proposed smart grid pilot program consists of two components: (1) a Demand Reduction program that will evaluate the demand reduction impacts of different combinations of time-of-use rates and enabling technologies; and (2) a Distribution Automation program that will address distribution capacitor bank control, power quality monitoring, and Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (“SCADA”) system development (id. at 8-12). The Company states that these smart grid pilot program components, in conjunction with the two-way communication capabilities provided by its existing advanced metering infrastructure, satisfy the requirements of the Green Communities Act (id. at 3)".