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U.S. Energy Information Administration Seeks Input on Proposed Changes to Two Electric Power Surveys

The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), the statistical and analytical agency within the U.S. Department of Energy, is proposing changes to two electric power survey forms. EIA is soliciting comments on the proposed changes in a Federal Register Notice.

The changes would reduce the number of power plants reporting fuel cost, quality, and receipts, and narrow the scope of data collected from smaller utilities on retail electricity sales and related data. The proposed changes would also reduce the workload for survey respondents and reduce EIA's costs for operating the surveys.

The changes would be effective starting in 2013.

The proposed changes to the fuel cost, quality, and receipts collection would eliminate from the survey all power plants with a capacity of less than 200 MW (the reporting threshold has been 50 MW), and limit the range of fuels collected to coal, petroleum coke, distillate and residual fuel oil, and natural gas. Minor fuels, such as blast furnace gas, kerosene, and jet fuel would be dropped from the survey.

These changes would not apply to the collection of data on power plant generation and fuel consumption. This information would continue to be collected for all power plants and fuels.

The proposed changes to the annual retail sales survey would direct the full survey to the largest 2,200 utilities, which account for about 98% of total U.S. electricity sales. About 1,100 smaller utilities (accounting for about 2% of annual electricity sales) would generally be required to complete only a short form each year. In addition to retail sales, other data affected by this change include information on demand response, distributed generation, and smart meters.

Comments on the proposed changes are due to EIA by May 14, 2012. For additional information see the EIA web site at http://www.eia.gov/survey/changes/electricity/.

The product described in this press release was prepared by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), the statistical and analytical agency within the U.S. Department of Energy. By law, EIA's data, analysis, and forecasts are independent of approval by any other officer or employee of the United States Government. The views in the product and press release therefore should not be construed as representing those of the Department of Energy or other Federal agencies.

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