Some thoughts on the battle to measure electricity consumption in real time.
How can something so simple as an electric meter bring governments, editors, and the utility industry to their knees?
San Diego Gas & Electric turns vendor heads with its plan to install real-time meters, but the company could face heat from regulators.
This is a landmark event," says Bill Rush, a physicist at the Gas Technology Institute, and a gas industry expert on electric utility metering systems.
September 1, 2000
Wakeup Call in San Diego?
By Regina R. Johnson
How to replace the bundled utility tariff with a rational design for access, throughput, and congestion.
Some in California say they will pay double - once to the ISO, then again to the IOU.
What if power prices fall but the savings get eaten up by higher transmission rates? Let's say we unbundle the wires, but end up creating just another layer of costs? We pay the independent system operator (ISO) to run the grid, but the investor-owned utility (IOU) still owns the wires. It has its own costs to recover. So now we pay two bills, right?
The issue is troublesome for California's electric utilities and a quagmire for Pacific Gas & Electric Co. In a new tariff it filed on Nov.
California again is the proving ground. Analysts see DG as the biggest issue since the PUC first mapped its "vision" for retail competition.
Federal and state interests clash as the FERC battles California over the future of the state's power exchange.
The California Power Exchange will not outlive its four-year mandate because it cannot compete with lower-cost exchanges, such as the New York Mercantile Exchange, Automated Power Exchange and low-cost over-the-counter brokers. So says Edward Cazalet, chief executive officer at Automated Power Exchange and chief rival of the CalPX.
Sales prices for power generation assets in the United States during the past two years have climbed to unprecedented levels. This trend should continue. More than 20,000 megawatts of generation assets have been sold, with another 20,000 MW announced. During the next five years, it is expected that 70,000 to 140,000 MW will change hands. We have seen only the beginning of a massive redistribution of generation assets - from regulated utilities to unregulated marketers and plant operators.
In fact, the prices we've seen for generation assets may turn out to be bargains.