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CALIFORNIA | HEARD ON THE BEAT / ENERGY

Pilot Programs

November 06, 1996|CHRIS KRAUL | TIMES STAFF WRITER

A sister company of San Diego Gas & Electric will participate in a Massachusetts pilot project offering residents and businesses a choice of whom they buy energy from, to help it prepare for California's soon-to-be-deregulated energy market. Pilot programs are also underway in New Hampshire and Illinois.

Beginning Jan. 1, Enova Energy, a subsidiary of SDG&E's parent Enova Corp., and five other power companies will offer 10,000 Massachusetts residents and business customers three options: low-price, environmental sensitivity and other, including variable-rate pricing or added services.

To attract customers, Enova and the other power providers in the Massachusetts program will offer discounts of between 4% and 18% off current rates. Companies including Enova say they hope to make a profit, but they will absorb any losses on the power sales and equipment outlays resulting from the program.

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