Niagara Mohawk garners another global award for AMR project with Itron

Niagara Mohawk, an energy distribution subsidiary of National Grid USA, has won the 2004/2005 Best Metering Revenue Assurance Initiative in Canada, the United States, Asia and Africa, as selected by the Energy Planning Network (EPN). Niagara Mohawk won using Itron's award-winning automatic meter reading (AMR) technology and its solid-state Centron electricity meters...

SPOKANE, WA, Feb. 16, 2005 -- Itron Inc. announced that Niagara Mohawk, an energy distribution subsidiary of National Grid USA, has won the 2004/2005 Best Metering Revenue Assurance Initiative in Canada and the United States for an Investor-Owned Utility (IOU) as selected by the Energy Planning Network (EPN).

The award will be presented at EPN's 2004/2005 Metering Awards Workshop in Las Vegas on April 11, prior to the opening of Metering Americas 2005. EPN's Peer Group sponsors the awards, consisting of professionals managing energy decisions in large commercial/industrial corporations.

Niagara Mohawk successfully installed 1.5 million Itron Centron® residential meters equipped with automatic meter reading (AMR) technology, 27,000 AMR Polyphase meters and 570,000 AMR-equipped gas meters in 18 months. The utility used the Centron solid-state meter as a "platform" for advanced or smart metering, providing additional accuracy from the older electromechanical meters, precise measurement of energy used, and flexibility to adapt as needs change -- all at a cost that made the deployment a priority for Niagara Mohawk.

Winners were determined by a panel of judges who scored entries on project innovation, project benefits and project management.

"EPN's awards program represent an unprecedented collaborative effort by all types of utilities working together to recognize other utility colleagues for excellence," said John Hoggard, EPN's managing director. "This is truly a cross-industry effort, with representatives from gas companies, investor-owned utilities, water companies, municipal utilities and electric cooperatives participating as judges to jointly recognize excellence."

With its deployment of Itron's solid-state meters and AMR technology, Niagara Mohawk has also won the prestigious AMR Project of the Year for 2004 by Utility Automation & Engineering T&D Magazine, presented at the 2005 DistribuTECH conference last month in San Diego. Niagara Mohawk provides electric service to approximately 1.5 million customers and natural gas service to about 570,000 customers in upstate New York. It is the second largest combined electric and gas utility in New York.

"Niagara Mohawk continues to prove the value of its decision to use Itron's award winning solid-state meters and AMR technology," said Malcolm Unsworth, vice president and general manager for Itron's hardware solutions group. "Once again, we congratulate Niagara Mohawk on garnering yet another well-deserved award. They continue to look toward the future, operating more efficiently while providing customers with the highest degree of accuracy."

Niagara Mohawk provides electric service to approximately 1.5 million customers and natural gas service to about 570,000 customers in upstate New York. It is the second largest combined electric and gas utility in New York. The territory is expansive, 24,000 square miles, and meter readers are spread throughout the region.

Itron (www.itron.com) is a leading technology provider and critical source of knowledge to the global energy and water industries. More than 3,000 utilities worldwide rely on its award-winning technology to provide the knowledge they require to optimize the delivery and use of energy and water. Itron provides solutions for electricity metering; meter data collection; energy information management; demand response; load forecasting, analysis and consulting services; distribution system design and optimization; web-based workforce automation; and enterprise and residential energy management.

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