Smart grid evolution requires two-way communication—with meters and with customers themselves.
Guerry Waters is vice president of industry strategy at Oracle Utilities.
The smart grid is all about information. It’s about using information to better accomplish utility goals: more efficient processes, reliable service, empowered customers, and a sustainable environment. Along with smart grid comes promises of a wealth of data for both utilities and consumers. But how are utilities communicating the benefits? How are they and their customers using that data? In the wake of several smart grid and smart meter successes—and failures—what’s next?
In its second year, Oracle’s report, Smart Grid Challenges & Choices, Part 2: North American Utility Executives’ Vision and Priorities comes at a critical time for smart grid visionaries. Earlier this year in his State of the Union address, Pres. Obama called for a new national goal of generating 80 percent of America’s electricity from clean energy sources by 2035.1 While the goal might seem a long way off, utilities must prepare to address the challenges that lie ahead.
Against this backdrop, the 2011 report sought to further understand utilities’ vision for the upcoming decade, how smart grid plans and expectations are evolving, and how utilities can more effectively communicate these changes to their customers.