Insights from our Editorial Team
Institutional mistrust and the rejection of science
Fringe elements on both the right and left ends of the political spectrum are demonizing and disrupting public discussion of sustainable practices, including grid modernization. The rhetoric is wacky, inaccurate and destructive to society and its will to move ahead. And it is pervasive.
Cobb EMC, OG&E and the Utility Analytics Institute explain the value path
What is Big Data? Mike Smith, vice president, marketing practices, for Energy Central's Utility Analytics Institute (UAI), says, "The reality is, in the world we live in beyond utilities, there's an incredible amount of digital data being created." For the utility world, Big Data also means big changes in the day-to-day operations, and in customer service.
Implementation: weak link in cyber security?
Chasing mandates on security compliance may be driven by aversion to fines. But that approach can lead to faulty security measures and, more importantly, impair your security stance. Listen in on a discussion of "how to think about security."
Utilities, vendors, enviros, consumer advocates weigh in
Implementing energy storage is fraught with complexities. While it has some clear-cut applications, some argue that alternatives for those applications are less costly. And implementing energy storage can have unintended consequences for the electricity market, possibly upending environmental goals. Should California establish procurement goals for utilities, given the uncertainties?
California regulators hear from interested parties
Need a primer on energy storage issues? We offer a look at the issues faced by California regulators as they seek to articulate policy to answer the demands of legislation known as AB 2514. Today, the utility perspective. Tomorrow, other interested parties.
"Single version of the truth" sought for uniform results
Big Data calls for an IT architecture that can store, manage and extract value from data streams on a scale not seen by utilities until now. Central governance is favored over separate silos. And in-house expertise in determining the business questions that guide data mining will likely be sought. Two utilites describe their approach in this column.
Modest muni engages customers, technology and spirit
Let us now praise utilities that are using smart technology and customer participation to meet budgetary and technical constraints. Today we visit Colorado Springs Utilities at the base of Pikes Peak.
PG&E opt-out option doesn't soothe anti-smart meter antagonists
As I have noted before, a critical piece of the intelligent utility is the intelligent consumer. In my opinion, the latter was sorely lacking in the public input portion of the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) Feb. 1 business meeting. As I watched the video coverage yesterday, I was struck nearly dumb by some of the continued public outrage against the CPUC's proposed decision on agenda item 28, the modification of Pacific Gas and Electric Company's (PG&E's) smart meter program.
Forum comments on the opt-out option
The California Public Utilities Commission has spoken on PG&E's opt-out program and, now, our readers have their say. Those objecting to paying for their opt-out option could cost fellow ratepayers about $50 million in the first year, if they have their way.
CPUC proceedings turn to cost allocation
The California Public Utilities Commission yesterday approved analog meters as the opt-out option for Pacific Gas & Electric. The decision raises fundamental questions about the future of a smarter grid, about the integrity of the regulatory process and about the motivations behind those who reject smart meters for purported health reasons.