EnerKnol’s Visual Primer – How Utility Resource Planning is Evolving to Keep Pace with Low-Carbon Transition

Utility regulators are expanding resource planning requirements as a growing number of utilities are proposing early closure of coal plants, in addition to investing more in solar, wind and battery storage. Long-term resource plans are evolving to consider a host of emerging issues ranging from equity assessments and avoided costs, to reflecting the cost of carbon, as utilities seek to balance flexibility and reliability.

Michigan Regulator Asks DTE Electric to Submit Revised Resource Plan

The Michigan Public Service Commission on Feb. 20 sent DTE Electric Company back to the drawing board on its long-term resource plan, citing fundamental flaws including lack of competitive bidding for supply-side resource additions. The agency recommended that DTE issue a request for proposals for new generation, and raise the proposed energy efficiency targets. Considering…

FERC Orders Could Hinder Renewables, Electric Storage in New York Power Markets

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on Feb. 20 issued a series of orders to narrow the resources exempt from the New York grid operator’s buyer-side market power mitigation rules. The agency dismissed a complaint from the Public Service Commission and the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority seeking an exemption for electric storage…

EnerKnol’s Visual Primer – Time-Varying Rates Gain Prominence as Smart Metering and Renewables Expand

Electric utilities and regulators across the U.S are increasingly considering time-varying rates as a means to reduce peak energy demand, utilize smart meter investments, and balance the grid amid the proliferation of distributed energy resources, including electric vehicles. Rate design that works in concert with the innovations in clean energy technology is critical to modernize the distribution grid.

New York Advances $485 Million Transmission Project to Enhance Grid Reliability, Support Renewables

The New York State Public Service Commission approved the first phase of the New York Power Authority’s Moses-Adirondack Smart Path Reliability Project, which is designed to improve the reliability and resilience of the electric system in Upstate New York, according to a Feb. 6 news release. The project will rebuild facilities that are well past…

EnerKnol’s Visual Primer – As More States Weigh Retail Electric Choice, Early Adopters Tighten the Bolts

Retail electric choice has garnered increased attention as more states are weighing the prospects of opening their electricity markets to retail competition. In states with retail choice programs, regulators continue to strengthen oversight, in a bid to ensure customer protection and satisfactory service from competitive suppliers. Recent actions range from Arizona regulators’ efforts to implement customer choice, to New York’s strengthening oversight of energy marketers, and the Florida Supreme Court’s rejecting an energy choice ballot initiative.

New Pathfinder Initiative Aims to Protect U.S. Energy Infrastructure From Cyber Threats

The U.S. Energy Department has partnered with the Department of Homeland Security and Department of Defense on a new Energy Sector Pathfinder initiative to strengthen intergovernmental cooperation in proactively addressing cyber threats to critical energy infrastructure, according to a Feb. 3 news release. The initiative aims to advance information sharing, enhance training and education regarding…

Hydropower Garners Attention as States Race for Carbon-Free Grid

Hydropower is moving to the forefront of clean energy and climate policy debates as a growing number of U.S. states are setting targets to achieve zero-carbon power. About half a dozen state-level laws were enacted last year to establish 100 percent clean energy transition, showing how the nation’s decade-long renewable push is ramping up. Hydroelectricity…

EnerKnol Grid Modernization Tracking Table Q4 2019 Sample

A growing number of states are exploring grid modernization to keep pace with fast-evolving technological advances and growing distributed generation. The smart grid concept ties together multiple initiatives ranging from solar-battery microgrids to vehicle-to-grid power flow management, and grid hardening to support reliability and resiliency. It may also include advanced meters, which are a pivotal…...

EnerKnol’s Visual Primer – New Jersey Pursues Bold Strategies to Advance Decarbonization

New Jersey is making strides to accelerate the transition to a clean energy economy. Among recent actions, the state released a comprehensive plan for economy-wide decarbonization, enacted a law to boost electric vehicle use targeting 2 million EVs on the road by 2035, and doubled the offshore wind power goal to 7.5 gigawatts by 2035.

California Commission Proposes Additional Measures to Minimize Impact of Utility Power Shutoffs

The California Public Utilities Commission proposed additional guidelines that investor-owned utilities would be required to follow prior to the 2020 wildfire season prepare for and minimize the impacts of public safety power shutoff events to avoid the risk of power lines starting wildfires, according to a Jan. 30 news release. The agency also issued a…

Southwest Power Pool to Invest $545 Million in Transmission Upgrades Amid Rapidly Changing Generation Mix

The Southwest Power Pool Inc.’s Board of Directors approved the grid operator’s 2020 transmission expansion plan report, a comprehensive listing of transmission projects in the region for the 20-year planning horizon, according to a Jan. 28 news release. The plan includes 78 projects to be constructed over the next six years in eight states at…