In light of the ongoing nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, state utility commissions are taking different approaches to mitigate the impacts on utilities and ratepayers. Several states have extended moratoriums on service terminations while directing utilities to proactively engage in outreach programs to inform customers about payment assistance and plans. Others have allowed utilities to resume disconnections for nonpayment as costs of unpaid bills continue to mount.
EnerKnol’s Visual Primer – Electric Vehicle Charging Programs on Rise as States Address Barriers to Transportation Electrification
States and utilities across the U.S. are expanding electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure to overcome barriers to transportation electrification. The demand for fast charging in states with zero-emission vehicle goals, such as California, New York, and New Jersey, have heightened the need for reliable access to a wider network of stations.
EnerKnol’s Visual Primer – Utilities Continue Plans to Accelerate Phase-Out of Coal-Fired Generation
Proposals to accelerate the phase-out of coal-fired generation appear more prominently in long-term resource plans of U.S. electric utilities, reflecting the growing shift to renewable energy. The transition from coal continues to be driven by state clean energy mandates, emissions reduction goals, low natural gas prices, and increased availability of low-cost renewables and storage resources.
EnerKnol’s Visual Primer – Increased Focus on Clean Energy Prompts Wholesale Power Markets to Weigh Carbon Pricing
There is a growing interest in how carbon pricing can be incorporated into wholesale power markets as more jurisdictions embrace policy goals to transition to a lower-carbon power system. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has scheduled a technical conference to consider state adoption of mechanisms to price carbon emissions in regions with commission-jurisdictional electricity markets.
EnerKnol’s Visual Primer – Distributed Generation Compensation Evolves to Reflect Benefits With Greater Accuracy
Recently, state regulators have stepped up efforts to value distributed energy resources (DERs) more accurately while looking for ways to better reflect the costs they impose on the grid. Among recent actions, New York adopted a mechanism to move the market towards more cost-reflective rates, while California decided to include avoided transmission costs in the valuation, and Connecticut unveiled a study on quantifying the benefits of these resources.
EnerKnol’s Visual Primer – States Advance Alternative Ratemaking Plans to Support Clean Energy Transition
Alternative ratemaking plans and innovative rate design proposals continue to emerge as utilities adapt to policy and technology changes driven by decarbonization efforts and distributed energy growth. With growing state mandates to increase renewable energy generation, regulators are devising performance metrics and incentives to encourage utility innovation in achieving policy goals.
EnerKnol’s Visual Primer – U.S. Offshore Wind Industry Makes Strides as East Coast States Plan 5 Gigawatts of New Capacity
The offshore wind industry continues to progress in the U.S. with East Coast states proceeding with new solicitations to procure capacity to meet their ambitious goals. New York and New Jersey are seeking to add nearly five gigawatts alongside offshore port infrastructure. Massachusetts is considering a bundled solicitation for generation and transmission in its next round of procurement. The industry’s growth has prompted federal regulators to examine whether existing frameworks in regional transmission organizations can accommodate offshore wind integration.
EnerKnol’s Visual Primer – Ohio Nuclear Bailout Scandal Stirs Up Questions Over Ratepayer Subsidies for Aging Power Plants
The debate over ratepayer subsidies for struggling nuclear power plants has resurfaced, following a racketeering investigation related to a controversial Ohio law, which created a $1 billion bailout for FirstEnergy Corp. last year. The economic troubles of the embroiled industry come to the fore even as states such as New Jersey and Illinois evaluate plans to opt out of the regional capacity market in response to reforms that expanded the minimum offer price rule to subsidized resources.
EnerKnol’s Visual Primer – FERC’s Updates to Utility Power Procurement Rules Gives States More Say in Rate Setting
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has revised the regulations for implementing a 1978 federal law, which requires electric utilities to purchase power from small power producers. The reforms, intended to reflect changes in the energy markets, mark the first major overhaul to utility power procurement rules under the law, which has spurred the growth of small renewable generators.
EnerKnol’s Visual Primer – Court Cements Energy Storage Access to Wholesale Markets, Expands Opportunities for Growth
In a major victory for the energy storage industry, a federal court affirmed that battery installations connected to the distribution grid must have the opportunity to access wholesale power markets. The move comes as federal regulators are examining the growing interest in hybrid resources, with battery technology seen as an important tool in integrating other resources to the grid. The affirmation bodes well for expanding wholesale market access to distributed energy resources.
Utilities across North America are investing billions of dollars to decarbonize their power fleets to comply with unprecedented greenhouse gas emission cuts and bold renewable energy targets. The pivot to cleaner and greener power sources is reflected in the integrated resource plans and RFPs that utilities file with state commissions. Keep on top of the…...
EnerKnol’s Visual Primer – Mounting Legal Challenges Deal Blow to Major Oil, Gas Infrastructure Projects
A series of setbacks for high-profile oil and gas pipeline projects in the U.S. reveal the difficult climate for midstream projects in the face of growing legal challenges, changing economics, and states’ push to reduce fossil fuels as they embrace clean energy.