Retail Energy Supply Association Unveils Updated Consumer Guide

February 5, 2013

Washington DC

WASHINGTON, DC – Responding to rising interest among consumers and state regulators, the Retail Energy Supply Association (RESA) has updated its Consumer Education Guide. The guide is designed to help customers make informed decisions when shopping for competitively priced electricity and natural gas. The guide is also available in a Spanish-language version.

The revised guide was released at the winter meeting of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC) in Washington, D.C. NARUC is the national association of state public utility regulators, whose responsibilities include oversight of competitive retail electricity and natural gas markets in states that have restructured to promote competition and customer choice.

“In many states you can choose a retail energy supplier just as you do for cell phone plans, cable television packages and internet access. Choosing an energy supplier is no different,” said RESA President Melissa Lauderdale.

“There are a wide variety of products and pricing options in the market to consider,” Lauderdale noted. “But as with any purchasing decision, consumers would be wise to make the best informed choice they can. This guide is intended to help them make that informed decision when choosing a retail electricity or natural gas supplier.”

Many consumers might be wary of sales agents who knock on their door, call on the phone, or make offers through the mail or online, often because they are unaware of their right to choose competitive electricity and natural gas products in many states. As the leading national trade association for competitive retail energy suppliers, RESA is acting proactively to help consumers obtain the information they need to become better informed as they shop for competitive electricity or natural gas products.

“RESA members are dedicated to working with all stakeholders to promote vibrant competitive retail energy markets for residential, commercial and industrial consumers,” said Jay Kooper, chairman of RESA’s consumer education committee. “It is important to our rapidly growing industry to ensure consumers have a positive experience when shopping for competitive energy products and services and to have at their fingertips the information they need to make the choice that best suits them.”

RESA members adhere to guiding principles outlining marketing practices designed to protect consumers. To further ensure consumers have a rewarding experience shopping for electricity and natural gas, RESA’s guide seeks to proactively educate consumers about competitive energy suppliers, what it means for consumers to shop for their individual energy needs, and what questions they should ask suppliers before they enter into a contract.

The guide is intended to be complementary to efforts by state public utility commissions and consumer advocates to prevent bad marketing practices. The most potent tool in that effort is a well-informed consumer. RESA’s guide is easily accessible and provides general information on competitive suppliers, what to look for when considering a contract offer, pricing and product options, and what to expect from legitimate sales interactions.

“Some consumers may shop based on price, while others may shop based on billing options or product types, such as obtaining energy from environmentally friendly sources like wind and solar power,” said Lauderdale. “Competitive retail energy markets provide customers with choice, and as competitive suppliers in those markets we want them to be wholly satisfied with their shopping experience. We hope this guide helps consumers shop with confidence when considering the many energy choices available to them.”

RESA is the nation’s leading association of competitive energy suppliers dedicated to creating and sustaining vibrantly competitive electricity and natural gas markets for the benefit of consumers. RESA’s consumer education guide and Spanish-language version are available at www.resausa.org.

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About RESA

RESA represents competitive energy suppliers dedicated to creating and sustaining vibrantly competitive electricity and natural gas markets for the benefit of consumers.  RESA’s members include:  Champion Energy Services, LLC; ConEdison Solutions; Constellation NewEnergy, Inc.; Direct Energy Services, LLC; GDF Suez Energy Resources NA, Inc.; Hess Corporation; Integrys Energy Services, Inc.; Just Energy; Liberty Power; MC Squared Energy Services, LLC; Mint Energy, LLC; NextEra Energy Services; Noble Americas Energy Solutions LLC; NRG, Inc.; PPL EnergyPlus, LLC; Stream Gas & Electric, Ltd.; TransCanada Power Marketing Ltd. and TriEagle Energy, L.P..  For more information about RESA please contact Tracy McCormick, Executive Director at (717) 566-5405, or visit www.resausa.org.

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About RESA

Together with our members, we play a critical role in educating key stakeholders and are active in support of or opposition to bills that affect competitive electricity markets, consumers, and RESA initiated legislation.

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