Winning in a More Distributed Energy World
Top consumer smart grid news hand-selected and brought to you by the Smart Energy Consumer Collaborative.
In the U.S. power system's transformation, customers' traditional dependence on utilities is increasingly becoming a utility dependence on customers. This reversal is driven by diminishing electricity sales caused in part by the rising reliability and affordability of customer-owned distributed energy resources and energy efficiency technologies.
ComEd has announced an initiative to modernize municipal lighting and drive smart city development in northern Illinois. Itron will connect and manage up to 140,000 municipal smart streetlights across ComEd’s service territory, leveraging Itron’s multi-application IPv6 networking platform that ComEd is using for a variety of smart grid applications.
Duke Energy Carolinas announced recently an offering for customers interested in renewable energy — community solar subscriptions to two facilities generating a total of 3 MW. The program mirrors a similar 7 MW community solar project in South Carolina through a separate Duke Energy subsidiary, Duke Energy Progress.
For the first time in its history, DistribuTECH – the largest annual event for the transmission and distribution industry – hosted 12 start-ups in New Orleans and gave them each a chance to pitch their companies to a panel of judges. Those twelve start-ups represent the future of the grid, showcasing technology that utilities can use today to better manage their grids and customers.
A subscription plan concept for the energy industry with characteristics similar to Netflix and Verizon was outlined by Navigant’s Lon Huber on Feb. 10 at a NARUC panel that focused on rate design innovations. In his remarks during the NARUC Winter Policy Summit, Huber, a director at consulting firm Navigant, said it was important to understand some of the trends that are occurring around the rate design space.
Electric cars are already cheaper to own and run than petrol or diesel alternatives in five European countries analyzed in new research. The study examined the purchase, fuel and tax costs of Europe’s bestselling car, the VW golf, in its battery electric, hybrid, petrol and diesel versions. Over four years, the pure electric version was the cheapest in all places.
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti recently said the city would abandon plans to rebuild three coastal gas-fired power plants, and instead will focus on energy storage and other clean energy technology as it pursues a 100 percent renewables goal. Garcetti said his office concluded the city's Department of Water and Power could maintain reliability if the 326 MW Scattergood gas plant is retired by 2024 and two other plants totaling 799 MW of capacity are mothballed five years later.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo recently announced that New York is making up to $31.6 million available to expand the number of electric vehicle fast-charging stations in the state. The plan, which was approved by New York State Public Service Commission, is designed to complement existing NYSERDA and New York Power Authority funds to spur the development of fast-charging, direct current electric vehicle charging stations.