Power shifts as customers pass on electricity

Relief from utility bills seems to be self-made these days. Electricity consumption is falling, resulting in lower monthly tabs, and the driver is the economy. Reductions in production and spending discipline, triggered by an uncertain job market have led many to be a bit more cautious before turning on the air conditioner or leaving the lights on when exiting a room.

The fall in demand is the largest seen in several decades. Last year, the consumption of electricity fell 1.6 percent, and it's expected to drop another 2.7 percent in 2009, according to U.S. government predictions. If this year's forecast is realized, we'll have witnessed the first consecutive fall in electricity demand since 1949.