Insights from our Editorial Team

  • Readers say the darnedest things
    Oct 25, 2012 | Phil Carson

    Incoming! That's what you get when you pop off in a daily column on important utility issues. You'll get it from those who know more, those who think they know more and those who should know better. But it's bracing and we all benefit from a diversity of opinion.  

    Comments: 1
  • New consumer survey reveals gaps, best practices
    Oct 24, 2012 | Phil Carson

    Yet another consumer survey reveals low awareness of smart meters, but also effective communication practices. Customers value utility products and services, but utilities aren't communicating effectively, despite the tools and best practices at hand.  

    Comments: 3
  • Fun just might work for killing vampire waste
    Oct 23, 2012 | Phil Carson

    Portland General Electric's new series of videos aimed at residential audiences hit the perfect pitch on friendly, simple advice for home energy effiiciency and customers actually log onto PGE's site to add their two bits. It's a start.

  • SGCC study shows education increases favorability
    Oct 22, 2012 | Phil Carson

    The more consumers learn about grid modernization, the more they like it and support it. But the needle measuring consumer awareness hasn't moved in a year, despite widespread smart meter rollouts. That's good news and bad news in one.

    Comments: 2
  • Making lemonade out of lemons
    Oct 21, 2012 | Phil Carson

    Looking forward, digital meter rollouts are coming to fruition, leading to projections of declining sales. Looking back, the rollouts were not fully considered. Utility benefits came first and direct, tangible customer value came a distant second. Today, despite that misstep, it looks as if industry inertia has been positively affected. But the AMI mission remains far from complete.  

    Comments: 5
  • Innovator's legacy should be a best practice
    Oct 18, 2012 | Phil Carson

    John Hoffman died this week. Don't know him? Ever heard of Energy Star? The original idea was a brilliant way to motivate the masses to achieve energy efficiency. Given utilities' marching orders to achieve EE goals, reviewing Hoffman's ideas is worthwhile.

    Comments: 1
  • A utility's use of data reflects its vision for value creation
    Oct 17, 2012 | Phil Carson

    While utility data can (and should) be applied to a specific case, such as revenue protection or asset management, its value to all aspects of a utility's operation and business means that its use can also enable collaboration between former silos.

    Comments: 4
  • Lack of cyber attack proves nothing
    Oct 16, 2012 | Phil Carson

    Federal authorities are capable of overreach and redundant demands, but the lack of a major cyber disruption of the U.S. grid cannot be taken as a reflection that the power sector has done its work well. More angles on an issue that will never go away, post-9/11.

  • What's the logic behind a potential cyber attack?
    Oct 15, 2012 | Phil Carson

    Two utility executives walk into a bar, order drinks and badger each other over the logic behind the cyber security threat. Who are these people? What is their intent? How would attacking the grid advance their interests?

    Comments: 4
  • Oct 14, 2012 | Kathleen W. Davis

    As meter data management systems and other parts of the electricity infrastructure pull in more information on customers, devices, weather, outages and interactions, the question remains: What do you do with all this data. One major trend on the utility horizon in 2012 has been the use of analytics to understand patterns and estimate issues.

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