Transmission Costs

Electric transmission costs have nearly doubled in the past seven years, and impact every PEC member. But, you can help keep these costs down.

What are transmission costs?

The transmission-cost-of-service (TCOS) charge on your electric bill is the fee (or price/rate) PEC and other electric providers are charged to access the statewide transmission system.

What determines transmission costs?

Transmission costs are not set by PEC or other electric providers. They are set by the Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUCT), based on energy demand on the cooperative’s system during the four 15-minute peak events, or 4 Coincident Peaks (4CP). PEC’s system demand is determined by averaging member energy consumption during the 4CP peak events during each of the four summer months — June, July, August, and September.

The PUCT approves the rate a transmission provider may bill PEC and all energy companies in Texas. The PUCT’s approved rate is multiplied by PEC’s 4CP to establish our TCOS for the year.

If PEC’s energy use is high during the 4CP events, the cooperative will be charged more in transmission costs the following year — and because that cost is passed directly through, our members will see a higher transmission cost on their bills.

Example of a statement with transmission costs highlightedConversely, by lowering our energy use during a 4CP event, we’re able to enjoy a lower rate since we’re effectively using fewer grid resources. Learn ways to take the power into your own hands and reduce transmission costs »

When do these 4CP events occur?

We can predict that a hot day might produce a peak event, but we can’t be sure until after it’s happened. That’s why it’s important to pitch in together to shift our electric use away from the high demand time of 2 to 7 p.m., June through September — what we call Power Rush Hour.

How much could I save?

Take a look at your monthly bill. For most residential members, the transmission costs comprise about 8-12% of the total due.

Take heart — if you and your fellow PEC members all take on Power Rush Hour together, you can reduce that cost on your bills.