The intelligent-grid vision is becoming clearer as utilities take incremental steps toward a brighter future.
Building the intelligent grid will require less technical innovation than it does strategic innovation—a characteristic not typically ascribed to U.S. regulated utilities. But the utility culture is changing—by necessity, if not by choice.
FERC races to impose NERC’s new rules, raising howls of protest in the process.
After pleading with Congress for so many years, and then at last winning the requisite legislative authority to impose mandatory and enforceable standards for electric reliability, to replace its legacy system of voluntary compliance, NERC finds itself at a curious juncture. It wants to slow the transition.
Case studies on how AEP and Southern Co. are preparing for CO2 regulations.
Chuck Chakravarthy and John Rhoads
Energy producers already have begun to prepare for coming CO2 regulations. As a first step, many companies are implementing internal trading schemes. In this article, we have focused on AEP and Southern Co. as case studies of how companies are preparing for a carbon-constrained world, because they are in the top 5 companies in the United States with the highest proportion of coal-fired generation in their fleets.
How reliability performance monitoring and standards compliance will be achieved in real time.
Carlos A. Martinez, Robert W. Cummings, Philip N. Overholt, and Joseph H. Eto
The North American electric power grid has suffered several significant outages in recent years. These events and other incidents around the world spotlight the need for enforceable grid-reliability standards, wide-area visibility of the health of the power system, and real-time monitoring of grid-reliability performance to prevent blackouts. Effective reliability management requires real-time tools and technologies that can detect standards violations so that timely corrective or preventive actions can be taken.
New provisions nearly eliminate the financial impacts of the rule’s ozone regulations.
Stephen T. Marron and John H. Wile
As of 2009, annual caps on NOx emissions imposed by the Clean Air Interstate Rule (CAIR) nearly will eliminate the financial impacts of CAIR’s ozone provisions. What does this mean for your utility?
The new transmission siting and permitting policies could be just as messy and unruly as the old ones.
Richard Stavros, Executive Editor
The idea behind the NIETC is a noble one: to help facilitate the construction of badly needed transmission capacity to relieve congestion problems and improve reliability. In fact, the promotion of new infrastructure investment is at the heart of EPACT. But there’s just one problem. The new process for permitting and siting electric transmission under EPACT appears to be as flawed and contentious as it was pre-EPACT.
U.S. imports make up the fastest-growing segment of the industry. Are we prepared?
Gary L. Hunt and Hans Daniels
The renewed interest in coal as a fuel source for power generation will increase coal demand by up to 4 percent a year for the next 20 years. With so much coal produced domestically in this country, why are utilities choosing to import coal from producers located hundreds or thousands of miles from their plants?
Mixed signals leave developers wary of building new infrastructure.
Richard Stavros, Executive Editor
FERC Chairman Joseph Kelliher gives mixed signals that leave developers wary of committing to investments in new infrastructure, given his clear desire to affect positive change, while appearing to argue for policy decisions that are politically safe but arguably inconsistent.
Critics say its new budget and business plan could simply duplicate the work of RTOs.
FERC granted formal certification to NERC as the nation’s sole ERO and reliability czar, making it inevitable that NERC would delegate the job of regional enforcement to its various regional reliability councils, already constituted. To understand why FERC acted as it did, turn back the clock nearly a decade.
An analysis of what risks would have to be taken to significantly reduce carbon emissions by using natural gas in the short run.
An analysis of what risks must be taken, in the short run, to significantly reduce carbon emissions with use of natural gas.