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Many utilities cannot make Smart Grid investments until they have approval from their regulators. And even unregulated utilities must ensure that their Smart Grid outlays make financial sense. This section catalogs ideas and resources for making the all-important cost-benefit analysis.

Results: 114 results found. You are on page 1 of 8 pages.

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

smart grid, modern grid, smart grid technology, utility business case, distributed generation, electric utilities
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.

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

smart grid, modern grid, smart grid technology, energy storage, utility business case, strategy, electric utilities
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.

Utility death spiral: Is decoupling a dumb idea?

smart grid, modern grid, smart grid technology, utility business model, electric rates, rate decoupling
The traditional utility business model that ties revenues to the amount of electricity sold isn’t working now that energy efficiency and conservation are the goalposts for our energy future. Guest author Paul Alvarez says utilities, regulators and others should consider decoupled ratemaking as a possible solution. He explains why inside.

Utilities: Get ready for your next convergence -- smart grids and smart cities

smart grid, modern grid, smart grid technology, smart grid trends, smart cities, utility business model, electric utilities
As the world becomes increasingly urban, cities will fundamentally change. And utilities will need to change to meet the new and evolving demands of those cities. Read the story to learn about what that change, the convergence of smart grids and smart cities, will look like and why utilities should be paying attention now.

Why Barclays just downgraded the entire utility sector

smart grid, modern grid, smart grid technology, smart grid markets, solar power, energy storage, electric utility threats
In yet another challenge for utilities, banking and financial services firm Barclays has downgraded the U.S. electric power sector, contending that solar + storage could become cost-competitive with grid power… and that utilities may fail to re-assess their role in the energy future and adapt. Click for details.

Utilities: Your monopoly days are numbered. (Yes, we've heard this before, but this time...)

smart grid, modern grid, smart grid technology, electric utility business model, smart grid trends, disruptive innovation, utility competition
The end of the regulated utility model has been predicted for some time, and with ever increasing frequency. You may or may not agree it’s coming anytime soon if at all. But guest author Dick Munson’s argument that disruptive innovation is on its way is definitely worth reading.

The future of utilities – death spiral or reinvention? Leaders weigh in

smart grid, modern grid, utility business model, utility business case, electric industry trends, strategy, electric utilities
The conversation around the “utility death spiral” is depressing of course. But readers should take a look at some articulate and very well-conceived views from industry observers about options for the industry’s future. As you will see, some see disaster while others see a possible renaissance, a reinvention.

Ensuring that net metering remains a win-win-win

smart grid, modern grid, smart grid technology, distributed generation and renewables, solar power, solar industry, electric utilities, net metering
The net metering debate is far from over and the us against them mentality is still very apparent. However, the belief that stakeholders can come to a practical agreement is becoming more widespread. Guest author Brian F. Keane explains why it’s critical for the electric and solar industries to do just that… work it out.

Utility dinosaurs: Here are five plans for your survival

smart grid, modern grid, smart grid strategy, policy and regulation, electric utility business model
If utility executives want to transform today’s outdated utility business model into one they can live with they had better get busy. If not, someone else is likely to do it for them. Several organizations already have made proposals in an effort to sway regulators. Click to see examples of what they’re recommending.

What utility execs are REALLY worried about (not cybersecurity, even if it should be)

smart grid, modern grid, smart grid technology, smart grid trends, utility challenges, policy and regulation, distributed generation, electric utilities
It’s not that utilities don’t care about cybersecurity, but they do have other more pressing issues to worry about, according to a State of the Electric Utility report. Click to find out what issues and challenges concern utility professionals most, and where they see major opportunities.

Now we have proof. Utility transformation is at the tipping point

smart grid, smart grid business model, smart grid strategy, business model tipping point, electric utilities, Itron
Itron has released the eye-opening results of a survey that includes utility executives and consumers, and it makes some very clear points about the immediate need for major changes in the utility business model. It’s a very interesting read and the level of consensus is surprising.

Is a disaggregated future really all that far away?

smart grid technology, smart grid future, utility disaggregation, power decentralization, Silver Spring Networks, electric utilities
SGN’s Next Next Thing series of articles has focused for the most part on technology. But one contributor, Eric Dresselhuys of Silver Spring Networks, has a different spin on the ‘big what’s next’ for electric power providers. In his view, that industry disaggregation we tend to think will confront us sometime, someday, is already here and quickly gaining momentum.

Avoiding the death spiral: Think "multipurpose" to future-proof your utility

smart grid, modern grid, smart grid technology, smart grid strategy, distribution utilities, electric utilities, futureproofing, Lessons from the Real World Webinar Series
News stories predicting that the utility industry is heading into a death-spiral and financial turmoil have been non-stop. If you want to learn how utilities can survive, and possibly thrive, in this time of unprecedented change, sign up for our January 22 webinar “How to Futureproof your Distribution Utility,” and find out how it can be done.

Top SGN stories of the year: What you were reading in 2013

smart grid, smart grid trends, utility business model, security, electric utilities
Looking back at the year as it comes to a close is a familiar holiday tradition. For those of us involved in smart grid, it’s an excellent way to recap how far we’ve come, where we fell short and what remains to be done. The most widely read Smart Grid News stories of 2013 offer a good summary of where we were and a glimpse of where we need to go.

Coal fights back with claims that gas and renewables threaten the grid

smart grid, smart grid technology, US coal industry, renewables, power generation trends, electric utilities
The coal industry has taken a beating from cheap, plentiful natural gas and the growth of renewables in the US energy mix. But now the industry is fighting back, claiming that gas and renewables are a threat to the electric grid. Coal’s aggressive stance is sure to turn up the fire in what is already a heated debate.

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