Press release

Commonwealth Edison win the National Reliability Award at PA Consulting’s 23rd annual ReliabilityOne® Awards

02 November 2023

People hate it when their power goes out. Which is why PA Consulting’s ReliabilityOne® program is committed to working with US utilities to improve power grid reliability. On average, ReliabilityOne® program participant utilities had 55 percent fewer sustained power outages, and their customers’ outages were 70 percent shorter than the average US investor-owned utility.

At last night’s 23rd Annual ReliabilityOne® Awards ceremony, PA Consulting (PA), the company bringing ingenuity to life, awarded the National Reliability Award to Commonwealth Edison. Five additional utilities were also recognized for outstanding reliability and resiliency achievements in their respective regions.

The ReliabilityOne® Awards recognize North American utilities that excelled during the 2022 calendar year in critical industry categories such as resiliency, reliability, technology and innovation, sustainability, and customer engagement. Founded in 2000, PA Consulting’s annual ReliabilityOne® Awards are widely considered to be one of the most prestigious honors in the electric utility industry, recognizing organizations that provide their customers with the highest levels of reliability and resiliency.

Derek HasBrouck, PA Consulting’s ReliabilityOne® Program Director, said: “For the past 23 years, the ReliabilityOne® program has provided a unique, independent forum for utility leaders to openly share best practices and methods to overcome challenges, leading to dramatic grid resiliency improvements. We are delighted to announce that Commonwealth Edison has been recognized as this year’s most reliable US utility. They had a marked turnaround, and leveraged cutting-edge technologies, innovative designs, and extremely disciplined operational excellence to provide an especially high level of service reliability to their customers in 2022.”

PA analyzes the nation’s electric utility industry using publicly available information from the System Average Interruption Duration Index (SAIDI), which provides the average outage duration per customer, the System Average Interruption Frequency Index (SAIFI), which measures the average number of interruptions per customer, and the Customer Average Interruption Duration Index (CAIDI), which measures the average time required to restore service. The data shows that IOU (investor-owned utility) average system outage duration worsened by approximately five minutes in 2022 to 12 minutes, compared to the previous year. Key to the utility reliability trend data is PA’s in-depth analysis, undertaken as part of the process to identify the top performing utilities and ReliabilityOne® award recipients.

PA’s certification and analyses of the utilities in the ReliabilityOne® program found that:

  • ReliablityOne® award recipients saw an overall improvement in reliability performance, while the average IOU became less reliable from 2021 to 2022. Average SAIDI performance of the ReliabilityOne® award recipients improved by approximately 4 minutes (10 percent) from 2021 to 2022. ReliabilityOne® award recipients’ average SAIDI is 60 percent lower, or about 85 minutes better, than the average US IOU’s SAIDI. Customers of ReliabilityOne® award recipients experienced 55 percent fewer outages than the average US IOU
  • Investor-owned utilities as a group delivered decreased reliability in 2022 compared to 2021. The average IOU saw 4 percent increases in both average outage frequency and average outage duration compared to 2021
  • Utilities are working to meet broader climate change, sustainability, and clean economy goals and objectives by increasing overall electrification (building loads, electric vehicles, electrified ports, and incorporating more inverter-based resources on the distribution grid)
  • Utilities are using technologies that provide more comprehensive situational awareness of their service territory, their assets, and customers. Using deployed Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI), drones, imagery sourced from assets that range from satellites and LiDAR to dash-mounted iPhones, improved weather forecasting, and fire propagation models allows utilities to make better and more informed decisions regarding restoration prioritization, maintenance, and repair. The use of advanced analytics with machine learning and artificial intelligence methods helped these utilities derive actionable insights from the volumes of data generated by all of their deployed sensors.

PA recognized regional ReliabilityOne® award recipients from utilities across the US, based on overall system wide SAIDI, SAIFI, and CAIDI performance. Regional awards criteria reflect unique challenges for utilities serving metropolitan locations and those serving suburban and rural locations. Additional categories honored utilities for Outstanding System Resiliency, Outstanding Grid Sustainability, Outstanding Technology and Innovation, and Outstanding Customer Engagement.

The list of all award recipients is as follows:

National ReliabilityOne® Award recipient:

The ReliabilityOne® National Reliability Award was presented to Commonwealth Edison

This year’s ReliabilityOne® National Reliability Award celebrates the culmination of a 15 year reliability improvement journey. In 2022, Commonwealth Edison delivered their best ever reliability performance. Compared to when they started their journey back in the 2000s, Commonwealth Edison has reduced their SAIDI in half from over 60 minutes to approximately 30 minutes in 2022. Commonwealth Edison’s investments in system hardening, fiber optic and system automation, as well as its uses of AMI data for operational uses have all contributed to the continued, sustained improvement over the past decade. They have operationalized AMI data to validate and update outage times, ensuring the accuracy of outage records. Commonwealth Edison’s efforts to accurately model their systems using AMI data enabled them to actively provide personalized annual reliability performance videos and reports that document current year performance, as well as the last few outages experienced by the customer, covering the causes and durations. Additionally, Commonwealth Edison’s deployment of fiber optic communications to substations and field switches enabled better coordination of system protection and restoration.

This year’s six Regional ReliabilityOne® Awards recipients are:

West Region (Metropolitan) – San Diego Gas & Electric

Mid-Atlantic Region (Metropolitan) – Public Service Electric and Gas Company

Northeast Region (Metropolitan) – Consolidated Edison Company of New York

Northeast Region (Suburban and Rural) – Orange and Rockland Utilities

Southeast Region (Metropolitan) – Florida Power & Light Company

Midwest Region (Metropolitan) – Commonwealth Edison

ReliabilityOne® Award recipients for specific areas of outstanding performance are:

Outstanding Customer Engagement – Public Service Electric and Gas Company

Outstanding Technology and Innovation – Consolidated Edison Company of New York

Outstanding Grid Sustainability – San Diego Gas & Electric

Outstanding System Resiliency – Florida Power & Light Company

The awards reception was held at the Westin Resort in Phoenix, AZ before an audience that included energy industry experts and senior management of leading utilities.

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