Smart Grid Above the Fold: 8/18/17

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Top consumer smart grid news hand-selected and brought to you by the Smart Grid Consumer Collaborative.

Renewable Energy World | Utilities Shifting Away from Wind, Solar PPAs
There’s a new model emerging for growth-starved utilities looking to profit from America’s solar and wind power boom. AEP is using it for a $4.5 billion deal that’ll land a massive wind farm in Oklahoma and a high-voltage transmission line to deliver the power. NextEra Energy Inc.’s Florida unit is using it to build solar farms. And in April, the chief executive officer of Xcel Energy Inc. said he’d use it to help add 3.4 GW of new wind energy over the next five years.

Greentech Media | Tesla Installs Its First Solar Roofs, as SolarCity Disappears
Tesla CEO Elon Musk has one. And so does Tesla CTO JB Straubel. Both execs are now proud owners of a Solar Roof — the cornerstone of the company’s solar strategy moving forward. Tesla showed off the Solar Roof for the first time last October, wowing a crowd with textured solar tiles made to look like high-end shingles. The company unveiled pricing and started taking orders on the product in May. Musk recently announced the company had recently completed the first Solar Roof installations.

Enervee Blog | If Utilities Add Value, Millennials Will Engage
The utility landscape in the US is changing rapidly, in a way that’s expanding consumer choice and giving individuals a much greater say in energy management. With their native tech abilities, curiosity, cultural understandings and sheer number — millennials are now the largest age cohort — millennials are expected to be in the drivers’ seat. Two recent studies in North America provide rich insights on these trends, most recently SGCC’s “Spotlight on Millennials”.

Greentech Media | Rural Co-Ops and Public Utilities Have Voluntarily Built Nearly 100MW of Community Solar. Here’s Why
In 2015, a farmer walked into the office of a customer-owned electric cooperative in Wisconsin. He pulled out his checkbook and wrote a check to the cooperative for $60,000. That day, two other cooperative members followed suit, and the three of them bought up 10 percent of the brand-new community solar garden on the first day of subscription sales.

SGCC Member News
Electric Light & Power | Smart Grid Outlook: Millennials Want Lean, Clean Energy and Easy Conversation
Electric utilities take note: Millennials are large and soon to be in charge. A recent report by SGCC shows that the nation’s now-biggest demographic is not all that different from the previous generations. They like to save money, but they also want to save the environment. Results from SGCC’s “Spotlight on Millennials” indicate that more than one-third of millennials are intellectually dedicated to living “environmentally aware, high-tech lifestyles.”

Public Power Daily | Arizona Utility Taps Storage over Traditional Grid Upgrade
APS is installing a 2 MW, 8 MWh battery storage system instead of rebuilding about 20 miles of transmission and distribution poles and wires. It is the first time that APS has used energy storage as an alternative to traditional infrastructure, but it will not be the last, Scott Bordenkircher, director of transmission and distribution technology innovation and integration at APS, says.

Electric Light & Power | Duke Energy Forms New Customer Experience Effort
Duke Energy announced the formation of a new organization devoted to transforming how customers experience and interact with the company. Leading this new customer experience transformation organization is Barbara Higgins who will be responsible for designing end-to-end strategies for measurement, valuation and enhancing the customer experience for residential, business and commercial customers.

Utility Dive | BC Hydro Taps Powerley for Smart Home Pilot
BC Hydro has selected Powerley’s home management platform as part of an efficiency and customer engagement pilot. Powerley’s Energy Bridge provides a constant connection to the home’s smart meter, allowing real-time access to energy usage for the home as well as disaggregation into various appliances. BC Hydro has 1.9 million customers in British Columbia; the pilot will be available to those with advanced meters installed in their homes.

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