Success Story

Heartland Fabrication Saves by Utilizing Peak Notifications

Heartland Fabrication (Heartland), an inland marine barge construction company in Pennsylvania, specializes in the manufacturing and construction of steel products. Two of their core values are continuous improvement and teamwork, and with that in mind they approached their long-standing energy consultant, Usource, to improve upon their energy strategy.

During a routine audit of current energy usage against historical averages, Usource’s energy consultants noticed that Heartland was facing a 50% increase in their capacity tag. A capacity tag is a measure of how much electricity a company’s facility uses during the highest demand hours of the year. The higher a facility’s capacity tag, the more the company will pay for electricity during those hours. Capacity tags help to ensure that the electricity grid can handle peak demand and that everyone shares the cost of maintaining the grid. For Heartland, facing such a drastic spike in capacity costs would result in increased budget risk.

 Usource’s energy procurement team worked with Heartland to:

  • Analyze their current energy usage against historical data for irregularities and identify subsequent opportunities to reduce consumption.
  • Provide a strategic plan to reduce energy consumption based on peak days within PJM with the use of automated peak notifications.
  • Negotiate an agreement between the client and their energy supplier that allowed Heartland flexibility to plan out energy reduction measures and mitigate potential cost increases. A fixed-price contract would not have given them this flexibility and it is uncommon for buyers to be able to negotiate contracts like this without the help of an energy expert like Usource.

The resulting energy strategy allowed Heartland to utilize peak notifications to respond quickly and efficiently to PJM market price fluctuations. By monitoring alert notifications, Heartland was able to strategically plan for expected increases in the cost of energy and shut down unnecessary equipment when prices were peaking, leaving only business essential equipment running during those times. Since there were no penalties associated with failing to respond to the alert, how aggressively Heartland wished to respond was entirely within their control. As a result, they were able to take advantage of 5 PJM peak days over the course of the year, resulting in an energy reduction of 427 KW and a savings of over $11,000, nearly a penny per kWh. By leveraging Usource’s knowledge and experience, Heartland was able to reduce their overall operating costs without making any large-scale changes or altering their existing equipment.


  • 38% less energy consumed
  • 427 kW reduced energy usage
  • $11,700 saved in energy costs
As a trusted energy advisor, it’s extremely important to review all aspects of a client’s total energy spend; from having an effective purchasing strategy that delivers the largest economic benefits while minimizing the client’s risk, to ensuring the client is using their energy efficiently.

Niki Vigna


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