Distributed Generation & Microgrids

Benefits Add Up

SW Utilities Show Efficiency Benefits

The southwest region saw more energy saved from utility energy efficiency programs than was generated from solar power, both distributed and utility-scale.

Hooking Up

New Entrants, Many Ways to Engage

The ability of new entrants to interconnect new generation on a timely and fair basis is essential during the transition from coal to natural gas and renewables. But how cooperative will incumbents be about it? FERC has always understood that incumbents are incented to frustrate new entry.

Is Customer Activism for Real?

New Business Model, A Balancing Act

The attention given to the new electricity customer seems to overlook the fact that electricity is basically a commodity. And that the average residential customer may in fact be satisfied with electric service and price.

The Way We Live, and Renewables

When and Where DG Penetration is Miniscule, What Then?

As fast-growing as it is, rooftop solar will remain a rarity among large proportions of the American public. Which presents a real problem to utilities and utility regulators. Perhaps this is why utility-scale has such appeal.

Texas Solar Two Step

Different Outcomes in State’s Two Distinct Markets

Texas highlights the importance of market structures and economics in the growth of solar deployment. Driven by customer interest and policy objectives, distributed and utility-scale solar has thrived in municipal and cooperative service territories. The same has not been true in the competitive wholesale market with retail choice.

Rethinking Rationale for Net Metering

Quantifying Subsidy from Non-Solar to Solar Customers

A thought-provoking call for fact- and principle-based policy on the controversial net metering matter. From three respected co-authors from diverse backgrounds.

Reshaping Energy

Transition to Renewables Minimizing Societal Cost

Implementation of renewables is much more complex than simply replacing fossil fuel plants with renewables. We must transition to renewables. But let's make sure we transition to the package that minimizes total societal cost.

Competing Perspectives on Demand Charges

Survey of consumer advocates identifies areas of agreement and disagreement

This article summarizes perspectives on both sides of the demand charge issue. Based on this review, it proposes practical initiatives to address key concerns about residential demand charges.

Energy People: Ken Gerling

We talked with Ken Gerling, vice president of transmission projects at Burns & McDonnell.

During his twenty-five-years at Burns & McDonnell, Ken Gerling has managed transmission projects with capital costs of nearly two billion dollars, and led teams with as many as three hundred and fifty members.

Here Comes the Sun

Growing Impacts of Residential Solar on Utility Customer Service

What does PV mean for utilities’ residential customer service operations? From helping customers with supplier selection, through installation and maintenance issues? And with billing? To begin to address this question, we conducted two sets of surveys of residential electricity customers in the second quarter of 2016.