05 08, 2023

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By Molly Jerrard

Molly Jerrard is Head of Demand Response for Enel North America. In this introduction to our new eBook, Profiting From Energy Flexibility, she discusses the growing importance of energy flexibility and how organizations can leverage flexibility in their energy infrastructure to generate revenue and unlock bill savings.


On the electric grid, electric supply and demand must always be matched – a highly complex exercise for grid operators. Such supply-demand balance is needed to ensure the safe and reliable operation of the grid. If an imbalance were to occur, local or even widespread brownouts or blackouts can occur.  

Historically, grid operators achieved electricity supply-demand balance by adjusting electricity supply to match demand as it varies throughout the day. But in today’s energy landscape, grid operators are increasingly focusing on more cost-effective and less fuel-intensive ways of balancing supply and demand by seeking out flexibility from energy users.

What is energy flexibility? 

Energy flexibility focuses on the energy demand side rather than the supply side. At the individual site level, energy flexibility is the ability to reduce energy use or shift that usage to different times of day when requested by the grid operator. 

Grid operators incentivize flexibility, paying organizations when they temporarily reduce or shift their electricity demand to keep the grid in balance. There are a variety of different signals that grid operators use to request or encourage flexibility, whether explicitly in a program like demand response – where participants are asked directly to reduce their energy usage during times of grid stress – or implicitly through prices.

Demand-side energy flexibility is becoming increasingly important to meet the challenges of the modern electric grid and as a result, flexibility is a win-win for both energy users and grid operators. By strategically shifting their energy use to low-price times of day, or by reducing their energy use to make the grid more reliable during times of stress, organizations can see major bill savings and new revenue, respectively. And they are also helping to build resilience into the grid.

Can every organization leverage energy flexibility? 

Some organizations hesitate to capitalize on flexibility in their energy infrastructure, fearing that reducing or shifting their energy demand may affect their day-to-day operations. But most organizations already have more flexibility in their operations than they realize, and they can leverage that flexibility without major disruption by partnering with an energy expert. 

Organizations that don’t seek to capitalize on flexibility are leaving money on the table. Solutions like demand response, where energy users are paid to reduce their demand during times of grid stress, are growing in importance and creating more new revenue opportunities. 2022 was a record year for these demand response programs – and our experts at Enel expect this trend to continue over the coming years.

Discover your revenue potential in our eBook

Our new eBook, “Profiting From Energy Flexibility,” features valuable insight for organizations of all sizes and industries. It breaks down how to earn new revenue and decrease energy spend through energy flexibility and explains why these opportunities are expected to grow in the coming years.

Download our eBook now to find out how you can profit from flexibility – and where you can look for flexibility in your organization. This eBook covers a variety of topics, including:

  • Why energy flexibility is valuable to grid operators
  • The solutions that help you leverage flexibility to generate revenue and unlock bill savings
  • How to better understand where you may have flexibility in your energy infrastructure

Learn more about advancing your energy strategy by leveraging our integrated energy solutions.