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Understanding Nonresidential Time-of-Use Rates

Commercial Time-of-Use (TOU) refers to electricity rate schedules that break the day into a series of hourly periods like peak, off-peak and partial-peak. The amount you are charged for electricity changes depending upon the time of day and day of the week when the electricity is used, based on your specific rate you are on.

The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) directive on TOU affects both commercial, industrial and agricultural (nonresidential) and residential customers. PG&E reconfigured the original “A” rate tariffs into “B” rates, which include adjustments to peak hours and peak seasons and other changes. The CPUC made the transition from “A” rates to “B” rates mandatory for commercial, industrial and agricultural (CIA) customers. The transition began in March 2021 with most nonresidential customers transitioning by April 2021. A second transition phase occurred in November 2021 to address the remaining energy customers.

First identified in a publication produced by the California Independent System Operator and now commonplace in conversations about solar power production, the “Duck Curve” shows the decrease in solar energy as it coincides with daily increases in electricity demand. It represents the transition point for solar energy and resembles a duck, as its name suggests. To learn more about “Confronting the Duck Curve: How to Address Over-Generation of Solar Energy,” please visit Energy.gov. Video courtesy of the Department of Energy.

PG&E and Pioneer use the same TOU rate seasons and time periods to benefit the customer. There are several business rates. Customers must verify the rate on their account and cross-reference the times of the different categories. We have included the most common rate classes as examples. If your rate is not listed here, please visit the commercial page and visit the rates page for your county or contact your Pioneer team by email at  info@pioneercommunityenergy.ca.gov or by phone at (916) 758-8969.

Rate Season* Category Time of Day
B1
Summer
Peak
4 pm to 9 pm
Partial-Peak
2 pm to 4 pm and
9 pm to 11 pm
Off-Peak
All Other Hours
Winter
Peak
4 pm to 9 pm
Super-Off-Peak
9 am to 2 pm
Off-Peak
All Other Hours
B6
Summer
Peak
4 pm to 9 pm
Off-Peak
All Other Hours
Winter
Peak
4 pm to 9 pm
Super-Off-Peak
9 am to 2 pm
Off-Peak
All Other Hours
B10
Summer
Peak
4 pm to 9 pm
Partial-Peak
2 pm to 4 pm and
9 pm to 11 pm
Off-Peak
All Other Hours
Winter
Peak
4 pm to 9 pm
Super-Off-Peak
9 am to 2 pm
Off-Peak
All Other Hours

*Summer TOU rates are applicable from June 1 through September 30.

**Winter TOU rates are applicable from October 1 through May 31.

Pioneer Community Energy hosted a TOU webinar with PG&E to answer customers’ questions regarding rates and time-of-use pricing. For more information, please view our video.

Should you have any further questions about commercial rates, pricing or choices in energy options, please contact your Pioneer team by email at  info@pioneercommunityenergy.org or by phone at (916) 758-8969.

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