California Gives Confused Cities a Hand in Permitting Energy Storage

permitting energy storage

California lawmakers have passed a bill that gives confused cities and towns a hand in permitting energy storage and expediting requests, as the state positions to give energy storage a large cash infusion. At the heart of the new law, AB 546, are best practices that aim to help local officials who are unfamiliar with permitting energy … [Read more...]

Stacking Energy Storage Values to Make Batteries More Profitable: Brattle Report

stacking energy storage

Stacking energy storage values -- capturing many value streams -- can lead to profitable projects, even at current storage costs, according to a new report from economists at The Brattle Group. The report, "Stacked Benefits: Comprehensively Valuing Battery Storage in California," focuses on California, but its conclusions apply generally to the … [Read more...]

Smart EV Charging Can Reduce Peak Demand: Sonoma County Study

smart EV charging

Smart EV charging in California's Sonoma County can help reduce peak demand and aid in efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, says a new report,“Beyond Combustion: Electric Vehicle Trends, Goals and Recommendations for Sonoma County.” “Large numbers of EVs connected to the grid through smart charging technology offer a perfect place to … [Read more...]

Hurricane Harvey Devastation Shows Why Grid Resiliency is Critical

grid resiliency

While the devastation of Hurricane Harvey and the West’s wildfires are fresh in our minds, it’s critical to start focusing on grid resiliency -- and how distributed energy can contribute to it. Utilities and state regulators right now focus more on grid reliability than grid resiliency, said Kelly Speakes-Backman, CEO of the Energy Storage … [Read more...]

Duke Energy Florida Aims for Hip, Two-Way Grid of the Future

two-way grid

Duke Energy Florida has plans to re-make its grid into a two-way grid that incorporates renewable energy, storage, electric vehicle charging stations and smart meters and boosts resiliency. The plan is a blueprint for re-making a dated grid into a more fashionable system that’s bidirectional, flexible, protects itself against power outages … [Read more...]

Natural Gas versus Distributed Energy: Which is Less Expensive?

natural gas versus distributed energy

The natural gas versus distributed energy conversation continues with the release of a much-anticipated California study that concludes that a centralized natural gas generation plant is less expensive -- at least in the power-strapped area studied. The conclusion came out of a report "Moorpark Sub-Area Local Capacity Alternative Study," by the … [Read more...]

Can a National Demand Response Event Fill in the Solar Gap for Monday’s Eclipse?

national demand response

Amateur astronomists donning their solar eclipse glasses Monday likely won’t be thinking about how a national demand response event, grid modernization, microgrids, energy storage, or other resources might provide the energy needed to make up for lost solar energy. In fact, they probably won’t be aware that nearly 9 GW of solar power is … [Read more...]

Microgrid Case Studies Guide California as it Maps a Way to its Goals

microgrid case studies

In an effort to help commercialize microgrids, the California Energy Commission is analyzing lessons learned from nine microgrid case studies about projects that total 21 MW of peak capacity, with an average size of 2.25 MW. The case studies are detailed in a new report being prepared for the commission by Navigant Research. The state hopes … [Read more...]

Microgrid Incentives: What’s Needed to Spur More Microgrids?

microgrid incentives

Many energy technologies receive some sort of utility or government incentive -- especially those that are new and promising -- but need an early nudge to win the market's confidence. Microgrid incentives, however, remain scarce in the U.S. They do exist, but come mostly in the form of grants from a handful of states. Or some microgrids capture … [Read more...]

Virtual Power Plants & Transactive Energy: How Will They Change the Energy Business?

virtual power plants

Virtual power plants and transactive energy. You've heard the terms, but what exactly do they mean? And why does a leading microgrid analyst see them changing the way the power industry does business? At the center of the changes are the rise of prosumers, who once purchased energy but now produce it, helping create new opportunities for grid … [Read more...]