An Overview of the Green Button Initiative
What is Green Button All About?
- Making metered data available to consumers
- All electric users have meters that are used to measure how much energy they use. This metered data is used by energy service providers to calculate how much that energy will cost you, the consumer. Green Button is all about making that data available to you - for planning - for analysis - for your benefit!
- Green Button data contains no Personal Identifiable Information (PII)
- Green Button guarantees the consumer's privacy! The Green Button standard requires there is no PII contained within the data, only measured interval usage information. The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) cyber-security team has reviewed the content of Green Button data to ensure it meets this requirement. You should ensure your energy provider is a certified Green Button provider.
Metered Data Represented In Standard Format
- Interoperable Standards
- Green Button data implements the North American Energy Standards Board's (NAESB) REQ 21 -- Energy Service Provider Interface (ESPI) energy usage information exchange standard. This standard ensures energy information can easily be exchanged without requiring developers to invest time and money to support proprietary metered data conversion technologies. This enables application developers to create applications that provide services to consumers enabling them to analyze and plan their energy consumption, potentially saving them money.
Green Button Certified Service Providers
- Validation of Green Button Data Files
- Early Green Button implementations were not consistent in their application of the Green Button standard. This resulted in various interoperability issues and identifiied a clear need for a Green Button certification program. The Green Button Alliance is currently working on the deployment of Green Button certification programs resulting in the issuance of Green Button certification marks. The presence of a Green Button certification mark on an energy provider's website enables consumers and application developers to confidently rely on the data they receive being Green Button standard compliant.
Green Button Download My Data® (DMD)
- DMD is the simple starting point
- Many energy providers provide access to energy usage data for their customers through Internet websites. These websites provide a way for consumers to view historical usage data and, in some cases, to download energy usage data for further analysis. Often the downloaded file uses comma-separated value (CSV) formatting and is different for each website. Green Button Download My Data provides downloadable energy data that complies with the Green Button standard ensuring a consistent data format from all energy provider websites.
Green Button Connect My Data® (CMD)
- CMD provides automated access to energy information!
- Green Button Connect My Data provides application developers an automated technique to access consumer energy information while providing consumers security. CMD requires applications to gain authorization from consumers using the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) OAuth 2.0 Authorization Framework standards [RFC6749] and [RFC6750]. While such authorization can be obtained in several ways, a typical method requires the consumer to provide authorization using a webpage, similar to how Facebook and Google based applications request users to approve access to their accounts. This results in the application gaining access to the consumer's energy data without the consumer having to provide the userid and password they use to access their energy provider's website. Once this authorization is granted, the application is able to automatically retrieve the consumer's energy data without any further involvement of the consumer. CMD greatly simplifies and drastically improves the ability for applications to retrieve and analyze energy data beyond the capabilities of the DMD process.