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Updated: 4 hours 44 min ago

EEI asks electric utilities to help rev up PEV adoption

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The Edison Electric Institute is asking electric utilities to allocate a percentage of their annual fleet purchasing budgets for plug-in electric vehicles. EEI says utilities are a “tremendous leader” in supporting electric transportation and should further support the PEV cause and lead by example.

Smart grid wins: Partnerships, acquisitions, projects and more

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This week’s smart grid wins roundup is heavy on partnerships and acquisitions, but there also is plenty of news about transmission and metering projects and other developments. Read the story for quick summaries and click the links for further details.

What Disney can teach you about messaging to utility customers (yes, Disney)

59 min 47 sec ago
Persuading customers to get serious about conserving energy has been a tough nut for utilities to crack. But CEIVA Energy CEO Dean Schiller, a former Walt Disney executive, shares some refreshing and engaging thoughts (with examples) on how to get, and keep, customers’ attention.

Smart grid market research: China’s renewables growth surge and more

Thu, 07/31/2014 - 18:49
Smart grid market forecasts are always interesting because they change so regularly. This week we share research on a variety of markets to let you know what the forecasters are expecting over the next few years. Read the story for a quick look at the EV charging stations market, smart city technology, home automation and China’s explosive renewables growth.

Deathmatch 2014:The battle to control the Internet of Things (including the smart grid)

Thu, 07/31/2014 - 18:39
What happens when a new technology hits an inflection point? Frequently the answer is a long, drawn out battle over standards. This time the fight is over the Internet of Things. Click to learn about six emerging standards that could be contenders.

Regulator / utility collaboration – the 3 states that do it best (and other tips for better relationships)

Thu, 07/31/2014 - 18:28
It’s crucial, particularly in these challenging times, for utilities to be able to sit down and work with regulators. Nick Wagner, a member of the Iowa Utilities Board with a long list of additional credentials, shares his thoughts on why communicating with regulators early and often is so important… and how to go about it.

Smart grid technology roundup: What’s new in metering, analytics and more

Wed, 07/30/2014 - 17:11
As the smart grid evolves, the companies providing the technologies that make it happen continually develop new products, enhance existing ones and add services. Click to read about some of those new offerings from Elster, ABB, Trimble, Schneider Electric, Ideal Power, Itron and others.

How to keep your smart meters safe from attack (and not just cyber-attacks)

Wed, 07/30/2014 - 16:58
In the first installment of his two-part series, Kris Ardis of Maxim Integrated alerted you to seven serious threats to smart meter security and what their consequences could be. Now he’s back to share technology that can thwart those dangers.

Want to get started on transactive energy and nanogrids? Steal this government software

Wed, 07/30/2014 - 16:45
It’s an “everything is connected” world where the centralized approach to sensing, intelligence and control no longer offers the visibility and quick response time needed to effectively monitor and manage the grid. Read on to learn about a transactive energy solution that can help.

7 serious smart meter security threats that do NOT involve hacking the network

Tue, 07/29/2014 - 17:06
In the first installment of a two-part series, Kris Ardis of Maxim Integrated defines smart meter security risks that don’t involve hacking into the utility network. They do involve the smart meter life cycle itself, and the possible consequences he describes are more than alarming.

Home energy management systems get another chance (in Massachusetts)

Tue, 07/29/2014 - 16:58
While home energy management devices are nowhere near as popular as we expected them to be years ago, National Grid is going to make a go of it with CEIVA at its smart grid test bed project in Worcester, Massachusetts. Click to learn more about the project.

What we're learning from Europe's first campus-wide microgrid (think cogen)

Tue, 07/29/2014 - 16:12
Europe has taken microgrids on a different path with its first campus-wide system at Italy’s University of Genoa. It incorporates renewables and storage as American microgrids do, but also features cogeneration, a technology that’s far less common in the U.S. than it is in Europe. The project is worth following because there could be much to learn from it.

IoT gets a boost from Cisco in Barcelona (and more smart grid developments)

Fri, 07/25/2014 - 18:06
This week’s collection of smart grid wins makes up for its brevity with a healthy dose of variety, from IoT and transmission to metering, a new partnership on cybersecurity and grants for community microgrids in California.

Sure the utility business model is changing, but not so fast

Fri, 07/25/2014 - 17:58
The changing utility business model has been the source of considerable debate and handwringing. Yes, there are plenty of challenges confronting utilities now, but is wholesale change really coming soon? Jared Anderson of Breaking Energy recently interviewed an expert on the topic, and he had some very interesting things to say.

Lessons for utilities: How Japan massively screwed up renewables

Fri, 07/25/2014 - 17:50
Japan made a series of bad choices in its efforts to adopt renewables, despite having plentiful solar, wind and geothermal resources. A recent blog post from the Rocky Mountain Institute draws what may be some surprising conclusions about what went wrong in Japan coupled with a comparison to Germany’s approach. Click for details.

Quinone-based batteries could reduce need for metals, but project costs are high

Thu, 07/24/2014 - 18:05
Battery costs must drop if the stationary energy storage market is to grow as hoped over the next few years. New technologies look like promising ways to get around the need for metals like vanadium, but two Lux Research analysts report that project costs remain a concern.

The next big smart grid race? It starts at the end of the driveway (the distribution transformer)

Thu, 07/24/2014 - 17:52
The smart grid initiative has so far mostly been taken up with smart meters, and AMI has been regarded as the tool to enable the beginnings of a smart grid. But what’s next? Guest author Brett Sargent points to the distribution transformer and explains why it’s the next big thing.

Industry to Obama: We're BEGGING you for a national energy policy (and here's what should be in it)

Thu, 07/24/2014 - 17:41
The National Electrical Manufacturers Association is afraid DOE’s Quadrennial Energy Review, the closest thing the U.S. has to a national energy policy, will be a bust unless it yields more than a collection of unfocused ideas. Click to read some of the association’s nuts and bolts smart grid-related recommendations.

Utilities: Borrow from this "civilized" approach to distributed generation

Wed, 07/23/2014 - 18:22
The heated debate and contention over distributed generation, rooftop solar for example, has resulted in stakeholders taking sides and pounding each other rather than working to solve the problem. The Critical Consumers Issues Forum has released a report that outlines principles for an alternative: collaborative ways to resolve energy challenges, a “civilized” way of doing it.

What utilities forget when they analyze storage (Hint: It has to do with benefits)

Wed, 07/23/2014 - 18:06
Reducing the cost of energy storage technologies is important. It’s good business. But guest author Rogers Weed points out that it is just as valuable to increase the benefits storage systems provide. As he points out, business cases are referred to as cost-benefit analyses for a reason.