Community News and Information
Updated: 8 min 8 sec ago
Smart grid pioneer and author Mani Vadari is back with a new installment explaining how, of all the changes brought about by the smart grid, the introduction of new systems in distribution operations has created the most impact.
There’s a lot happening in smart grid this week, from Opower’s milestone in energy savings to Siemens’ renewable energy park project win in Ontario, Canada, and Ormat’s geothermal project in Indonesia. Also, you can read about 10 utilities that won recognition for best practices in customer engagement.
The future of grid communications goes far beyond just meters or just distribution automation or just communications support for today's intelligent end devices. As Elster experts see it, in the not-too-distant future an integrated, robust, highly reliable network will support ALL these devices and applications and very likely some we haven't even thought of yet. Click for more on where AMI is headed.
Pacific Gas and Electric has submitted its progress report for smart grid upgrades to California regulators. And it offers ideas other utilities may want to use for their own progress updates. PG&E’s report describes the utility’s progress on grid safety and reliability, as well as on energy and cost savings measures for customers.
Ron Binz, President Obama’s nominee to replace Jon Wellinghoff as Chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, has withdrawn following strong criticism from members of Congress and others. Some speculate that the frontrunners for the spot, all women, include a current FERC Commissioner, the Chairwoman of the Arkansas Public Service Commission and an attorney specializing in energy law.
Smart meter opt-out fees have always been a lively and contentious issue, but more utilities are now offering the option to customers who don’t want the new meters. Click inside for examples of how four utilities are handling their opt-out programs.
It took Intel a long time to get serious about the smart grid market, but now the company is partnering with Alstom to develop solutions and technologies for smart grids and smart cities. The companies have collaborated on projects in recent years, so the partnership seems like a natural progression.
Dean Frankel of Lux Research reports on South Korea’s recently announced plans to consider mandating energy storage and energy management measures, and revising its electricity rate structure. He also explains why increasing demand for power is forcing the country to evaluate a major course change.
Is there room for optimism about the U.S. energy future in the face of uncertainty and disruptions? The National Resources Defense Council says yes. While there’s still a lot of room for improvement, the country is on the right track as long as energy efficiency remains top priority.
A new report from Citibank says the global mix of energy sources is changing faster than we thought. If the Citibank analysts are right, electric utilities that aren’t evolving with the times could lose half of their addressable market. And it’s a sooner rather than later situation.
Utilities worried about the growing number of sophisticated cyberattacks from outside sources should be paying more attention at the home front where they’re most vulnerable, security experts say. Utility employees can be tricked into unwittingly giving up sensitive information and even infecting networks.
The smart grid is giving utilities so much data they don’t know what to do with it all. Read commentary from industry experts on the challenges utilities face as they grapple with what one observer described as “terabytes of data.”
Silver Spring Networks has taken a leading role in the emerging smart city market. For cities considering embarking on the smart city journey, SSN’s Sterling Hughes offers practical, experience-based recommendations on where and how to get started.
A new study released by the California Public Utilities Commission says ratepayers will pay more than $1 billion per year to subsidize solar customers by 2020. Read our story for more on the CPUC study and others… and how both sides are squaring off in the ever-escalating net metering wars.
DOE subsidized the installation of at least 1,000 phasor measurement units throughout the American transmission grid. Now the agency is offering cost-sharing funds for applications that make use of the data from those installations. Get the details inside.
Apartment residents have just as many electric appliances and devices as those living in single-family homes. What most apartment dwellers don’t have is access to the smart grid benefits of energy consumption information and tools. Doug Houseman of EnerNex says it’s time to change that.
There are a lot of smart grid wins, partnerships and awards to read about this week in a variety of areas. Projects range from energy storage and power system upgrades to smart grid technology research and a successful consumer engagement pilot.
American manufacturers have the ability to accelerate the country’s smart grid upgrade, to the point where it could be done for the most part by 2040. Click inside to learn why technical research firm Newton-Evans says the capacity to do it is readily available.
The transition from electromechanical electricity meters to solid state electronic meters was the biggest change in metering technology in over 100 years, says Brian Seal of EPRI. And the relatively new meters bring a different set of capabilities and limitations along with them. He explains what that means for the utility industry and what EPRI is doing to help.
As on-site renewable power generation grows more popular, the future of traditional public utilities has become questionable. The author of a recent article on the subject has done an interesting summary of the reasons for concern. And not that it’s going to make anyone feel better, but the trend is global.