by Mark Triplett
Whether for regional transmission systems, integrated utilities, or load serving retailers, there are many direct and indirect benefits – financial, regulatory, reliability, and customer satisfaction – that demand response can provide.
ERC Chairman Jon Wellinghoff is known for saying “Demand response is clearly the ‘killer application’ for the smart grid”. Others have projected that AutoDR sites will increase five-fold in the next six years. No doubt in the big picture it seems obvious that demand side management is a must to reduce dependency on fossil fuels and meet growing energy demands on a physically antiquated grid infrastructure. But what are the quantifiable benefits that demand response (DR) brings to bear, and who in the energy value chain reaps the benefits? More importantly, how do they calculate the benefits to build a business case in order to move forward in implementing a DR program? The purpose of this paper is to examine who directly benefits from DR and how to measure results for a solid business case to justify funding and implementation.
by John Jimison, Bill White, and Ben Paulos
Transmission upgrades and expansion are essential to delivering high levels of renewable energy to consumers, and enabling reliable power system operations.
merica’s electric transmission grid is rarely thought of; in fact, it’s taken for granted – until something goes wrong. Yet the largely unseen network of wires is critical to our economy, to the future of energy, and of the planet itself.
by Elliot Mainzer
To meet its many responsibilities, the Bonneville Power Administration must find ways to bring new capacity resources into regional operations to take some of the pressure off the existing federal system. Demand response and smart grid technologies are increasingly attractive as sources of capacity to support the agency’s power system operations.
he Federal Columbia River Power System runs through the heart of the Pacific Northwest, providing hydropower to keep the lights on and to fuel our economy with low-cost, carbon-free electricity. The Bonneville Power Administration, based in Portland, Oregon, markets hydropower from the 31 federal dams and one nuclear plant comprising the FCRPS. But the federal power system is not managed just for power – flood control, preserving endangered species, irrigation, recreation and navigation all have priority over power production. As a resource for electricity capacity, the mighty Columbia is getting stretched thin and it will take innovation to preserve it for the generations that follow.
by Rich Sedano, Carl Linvill, Camille Kadoch, and Elizabeth Watson
The challenges associated with improving grid function and ensuring consumer value are universal, whether addressed in the context of an ISO or not. There are advantages and disadvantages to each approach.
t the February 2013 winter meetings of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC), the Sunday Morning Collaborative featured a panel discussion that included commissioners from both the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and state regulatory commissions, as well as representatives of regional transmission organizations (RTOs), independent system operators (ISOs), and utilities – both members and non-members of ISOs. The discussion, though wide-ranging, was limited by time and the complexity of the subject matter, but in the main focused on the pros and cons of ISO membership.
by S. David Freeman
Electric utilities have a choice. They can create a new era of cleaner electricity and cleaner air by promoting solar power and electric vehicles, or they can continue to play defense and slowly but surely lose customers. The choice is theirs.
ome of us can remember when the electric power business was a growth industry – a time when utilities were encouraged and proud to market. It began in earnest in post-World War II America. We were in the full-bloom of post-World War II confidence and growth.
New power plants were needed and we soon found that increasing unit sizes enabled lower heat rates and more efficient, less costly power plants. From the 1950s onward, for two decades, the cost of producing power came down.