Feds seek plug-and-play for distributed generation, but utilities want the power to stay local.
Pity the poor Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). With its market crusade out of favor, and transmission reform suddenly suspect after the Aug. 14 blackout, it could use a new agenda.
How far do states rights go in transmission planning?
The energy industry, coming off a remarkably difficult few years, had to deal with the huge Aug. 14 blackout, the ramifications of which have now reached regulatory policy. By putting transmission planning and reliability in the spotlight, the blackout could boost merchant transmission owners, as regulators and politicians scramble to make sure such an event does not happen again.
Tomorrow's utility technology may be revolutionized at the molecular level.
Revolutionary changes have swept through the utility industry more than once. Although the industry often receives criticism for being slow to adapt, the fact is that utilities are continually building and rebuilding their systems and strategies around changing conditions. AAAAA AASuccess in utility planning often hinges on big things-like market restructuring or an upheaval on Wall Street. It can also depend on little things-like a piece of software or a metering device.
Green Generation Feels the Squeeze
Chasing after windmills and photovoltaics could well be the stuff of fiction.
Wind and solar cells (photovoltaics or PVs) are two renewable energy technologies that many hope will eventually provide the United States with massive amounts of clean, sustainable electric power for the indefinite future. Indeed, it is often suggested or implied that the United States can look to a future where most, if not all electric power can be provided by wind and photovoltaics [1, 2].
Coal gasification as a transition plan to build lead time to develop sustainable, climate-friendly energy technologies.
Editor's Note Several of the sources for this article and accompanying sidebars are referenced numerous times.
AEP Spreads the Sunshine
The utility teaches school kids about solar power.
A merican Electric Power (AEP) has launched an innovative program that uses solar power to teach school children about renewable energy while-hopefully-getting them interested in math and science. The "Learning from Light!" program was started in 1999 by AEP, and now boasts membership of its 100th school.
It's a hands-on project for the kids.
Overcoming many obstacles, energy technology continues to have potential.
Not everyone in the industry runs at 100 percent capacity.