New Mexico Water Utility Chooses MeterSense, CustomerConnect

Systems will manage data collection & customer education

Albuquerque Bernalillo County Water Utility Authority has selected MeterSense and CustomerConnect—Harris Utilities’ meter data management (MDM) and customer engagement solutions—to complete the deployment of its smart-grid infrastructure.

As the largest water utility in New Mexico, the Water Authority serves a population of more than 634,000 people via approximately 203,000 water meters. With the support of UtiliWorks Consulting in a program-management capacity, the utility introduced Sensus FlexNet advanced metering infrastructure in 2010. The Water Authority will introduce the hardware over the next five years, and plans to implement MeterSense and CustomerConnect by the fourth quarter of 2012.

Because drought is a major consideration in the American southwest, particularly during summer months, the Water Authority is especially conscious of the need to encourage residents and businesses to conserve water. To that end, the utility has introduced a number of programs to educate citizens about water use and the importance of contributing to state-mandated conservation goals. Its efforts are working. In part as a result of the Water Authority’s Water by the Numbers initiative, which recommends when and how often residents should water their properties, customers reduced their average daily consumption from 205 gal per capita in 2001 to 150 by 2011.

The introduction of MeterSense and CustomerConnect will further the Water Authority’s conservation efforts, said water conservation officer Katherine Yuhas.

“MeterSense will provide us with new tools to spot anomalies in water use throughout our service area,” Yuhas said. “That means we can drive down unaccounted consumption—from system leaks, for example—and further support time-of-day watering restrictions.”

Norm Daigle, executive vice-president of MeterSense, said this implementation proves that any utility—water, gas or electricity—can realize significant benefits from robust, integrated smart grid solutions.

“The Water Authority clearly understands its role as a steward of the environment. Together, MeterSense and CustomerConnect are enabling the utility to build on great successes and protect a critical natural resource,” he said. “It’s a pleasure to support the Water Authority in its goals to promote water conservation in New Mexico.”


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