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Reliant Energy launches first ever Learn and Conserve plan

Reliant Energy is now offering its customers an electricity plan that puts to use a highly advanced learning thermostat that helps homeowners better control their energy consumption. The retail energy provider is the first such company to offer the service, which uses the Nest Learning Thermostat in conjunction with the company's Learn and Conserve Plan.

The innovative learning thermostat collects data about the homeowner's lifestyle, adjusts energy consumption on its own while its users are away, helps teach them better energy-efficient practices and eliminates programming hassles.

"Cooling accounts for about 60 to 70 percent of the average home's electricity bill and with the Texas summer heating up, this plan couldn't come at a better time," said Elizabeth Killinger, Reliant senior vice president of residential and operations. "While only about 10 percent of programmable thermostats are ever actually programmed, 99 percent of installed Nest Learning Thermostats are running a schedule that reflects the owners' lives."

Reliant developed the program to stay competitive among several retail energy providers. After several years of phasing in deregulation, a number of providers have appeared, allowing residents to compare electricity rates and choose the provider that offers the best rate packages.