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Public Utilities Reports

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Fortnightly Magazine - May 2009

Smart Metering: CIS Gets Smart

Smart metering changes the back-office paradigm.

Scott M. Gawlicki

AMI’s data explosion will require back-office changes for CIS/billing.

Smart Metering: TOU Billing Today

Scott M. Gawlicki

The best example of combined dynamic rates and smart billing is found in Ontario, Canada. It uses central MDM to produce time-differentiated customer bills.

The Wind Watcher

Lori A. Burkhart

The search for the ultimate wind forecasting model got a boost at the end of 2008 when DOE’s Argonne National Laboratory began collaborating with a Portuguese research institute, INESC Porto, to develop a new platform for making such predictions.

PV's Promise

Michael T. Burr

Chris O’Brien is no starry-eyed idealist. An engineer with an MBA, he began his career developing fossil-fired power plants for the AES Corp. But in the 1990s his career took a different turn, when he launched the Energy Star program for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. After that, he went into the solar energy business, and never has looked back.

Green Progression

Michael T. Burr

Before L.E. Modesitt, Jr. wrote best-selling sci-fi and fantasy novels, he worked on Capitol Hill. Specifically he was the director of EPA’s office of legislation and congressional affairs during the Reagan administration. And not surprisingly, Modesitt’s novels focus on the politics of environmental issues. From his early novel, The Green Progression, to his Ecolitan series, Modesitt’s plots frequently involve biological warfare and environmental disasters.

People

(May 2009) AGL Resources created a new office of technology and environmental sustainability, to be headed by Ira Pearl as v.p. Jay Sutton is promoted to v.p., engineering and supply chain services at AGL’s Florida City Gas and coastal Georgia subsidiaries. Melvin Williams is promoted to general manager, Florida City Gas and coastal Georgia. And others...

Reducing Lifecycle Expenditures

Total cost of ownership accounting optimizes long-term costs.

Steven McCabe et al.

A large regional utility forfeited significant operating revenues after it replaced pulverizers at several of its coal-fired power plants. Because the replacement pulverizers were sized to operate at 100-percent capacity during operations using the coal typically procured by the utility, upgraded plants had to be derated following a change to lower BTU-rated fuel. If utility decision makers had used a total cost of ownership (TCO) framework, they could have avoided this situation.

Renewables and Carbon Markets

Allowance structures will influence project economics.

Fred Wellington

Carbon-reduction policies are being designed and implemented across the country. One common feature of these regulatory programs is a carbon cap-and-trade system—i.e., a carbon emissions market.

Green Imagineering

Perception trumps reality at Florida ‘solar city.’

Michael T. Burr, Editor-in-Chief

Once upon a time, a real estate developer dreamed of building a planned community. The developer, Syd Kitson, envisioned a “city of tomorrow™” in southwestern Florida, designed for efficiency, convenience and harmony with nature. Instead of driving cars everywhere, the 45,000 residents of Kitson’s Babcock Ranch would ride bikes to school, and walk to the cinema. They’d take a tram to visit friends in another hamlet, on the other side of a lush wildlife preserve.

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