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Fortnightly Magazine - January 2010

Rethinking Prices

The changing architecture of demand response in America.

Ahmad Faruqui, Ryan Hledik and Sanem Sergici

Pilot projects are demonstrating the potential of smart metering and smart rates to make the most of supply and demand resources. But as empirical studies show, not all pricing designs are equally suited to every region.

Green Energy Outlook

Realizing the benefits of a modernized system requires an integrated strategy.

Todd Filsinger

The U.S. power market consistently has displayed cyclical characteristics of boom and bust over the last two decades. Today’s market environment has been directly and significantly impacted by the recent economic recession. Decreases in load growth, declining commodity prices, and lack of accessible financing have caused challenges for the industry.

Mandating Federal Renewables

The importance of getting the REC markets right.

Daniel P. Krueger and Andre Begosso

The feds are ready to replace disjointed state policies with a coordinated national renewable energy credit market. Treating low-carbon energy consistently will promote investment in renewables.

Greening Connecticut

Aligning renewable energy incentives with RPS compliance.

Daniel P. Venora

States’ green energy policies are being used to serve multiple agendas. Lawmakers should revisit their renewable incentive programs to better align them with policy goals. A regional approach will yield a more efficient portfolio.

Federal-State Partnership

Transforming DR and smart-grid policies into reality.

George E. Johnson

Regulatory policies are evolving to make demand response and smart-grid planning a reality across the country. Cooperation between federal and state lawmakers will allow local flexibility within a uniform national framework.

Green Trade

ETRM software is adapting to a changing energy market.

Scott M. Gawlicki

Ask Ed Bell about energy trading and risk management (ETRM) technology and he’ll likely bring up his days with Enron back in the early 1990s. Bell—now a principal at Houston-based technology consulting firm International Commerce—says there are distinct similarities between the functional trading and risk assessment requirements his team had to plan for back then and the system requirements ETRM platform vendors and their clients have to prepare for today.

Green Quagmire

The black art of pricing social costs.

Michael T. Burr, Editor-in-Chief

At the Power-Gen International trade show in December, Questar Chairman & CEO Keith Rattie delivered a firebrand speech opposing the prospect of CO2 cap-and-trade legislation. To summarize, he said the Waxman-Markey climate bill is an “asinine” piece of legislation—which it is, as anyone who reads it quickly discovers. But more broadly, he said concerns about greenhouse gases (GHG) are based on incomplete science and politically motivated alarmism.

People

(January 2010) Xcel Energy announced that David L. Eves is the new president and CEO of Public Service Co. of Colorado (PSCo), a subsidiary. Riley Hill succeeded Eves as president and CEO of SPS. Reliant Energy appointed Tom Gros as senior v.p. of sales. CH Energy Group promoted James P. Laurito to executive v.p. of the holding company and its subsidiary, Central Hudson Gas & Electric. Oncor Electric Delivery promoted Charles Jenkins to COO. And more...

Middle Mile Moxie

Michael T. Burr

Xcel Energy proposes to create America’s first fully functional intelligent grid, with communications and automation systems linking the network from end to end, power plants to meters. Although Xcel still is deploying the system, it’s shown that the early payoff from smart-grid investments won’t necessarily come from automated metering, but from automation in the distribution network—the “middle mile.” As chief architect of the Smart Grid City project in Boulder, Colo., Ray Gogel served on the front lines in the industry’s technology revolution.

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