Insights from our Editorial Team
Aligning data in real-time, graphic dashboards aid decision making
Utilities have pioneered the integration of GIS with their business systems but the sheer amount of data has slowed progress, one GIS executive argues. Fully translating data into actionable intelligence via graphical dashboards will be "transformationa," the executive said.
An (understandable) lack of urgency, for now
The adoption of electric vehcles will not come swiftly in great enough numbers to challenge utilities' capacity. But over time, significant levels of adoption will lead some utilities to make major investments in IT infrastructure for system-to-system communications, according to a new report. That spending is expected to grow ten-fold in five years. Utilities should prepare to determine when a critical mass of EV adoption is reached, so they can make savvy IT investments at that time.
The U.S. Department of Energy discusses the issue with stakeholders
The U.S. Department of Energy recently released two reports, consolidating feedback from RFIs and public meetings, with regard to utility communications needs and data access and privacy. While some of the key findings are familiar, the second of the two reports delves more deeply into state responsibilities than we've seen of late.
Canadian Thanksgiving celebration provides opportunity for reflection
It's never too early, or too late, to reflect upon a busy year. Intelligent Utility magazine editor Kate Rowland took an early Canadian Thanksgiving Day to look back on what was a busy, exciting and somewhat tumultuous period for utilities across the country.
Twenty years ago, if a utility did something innovative, you assumed it was a large investor-owned utility. Over the last decade this assumption has faded, as co-operative and municipal utilities implement innovative solutions to address business challenges, and have delivered impressive results from their investments. Our industry might be making a similar paradigm shift with regards to regulatory concerns. Christopher Perdue spoke recently to David Johnson, chief information officer at EPB, about how his utility is dealing with innovation and regulatory concerns.
Is adoption inevitable or are EVs a niche play?
Economists, professors and pundits debate the fate of the electric vehicle in an online forum. Will limited range and anxiety over it limit adoption? Will the hurdle be battery costs? How will the cost of gasoline affect EV adoption? Or are EVs an idea whose time has finally come? Stimulate your thinking by checking the reasoning of a group of self-appointed experts.
Reno-based utility will measure transformer loads
NV Energy will offer its smart-metered customers a chance to opt-in for time-of-use rates, with one opportunity to opt-out within12 months if they face higher bills, in part to encourage nighttime charging of electric vehicles. Travis Johnson, manager of electric transportation and emerging technologies at the Reno, Nevada-based utility, describes NV Energy's approach.
Varied views on strategy, technology and vision
Participants in an online forum discuss "leadership" in the smart grid space and reveal a multi-faceted notion of "smart grid" as well as how it should be envisioned and approached. The comments are all over the map, but in aggregate provide a thought-provoking exercise in defining the space and what it means to lead it.
Smart money may require more patience than usual
Venture capital flowing into the smart grid ecosystem promises to reveal insights into what technologies will be disruptive, eventually mainstream and lucrative. But a glance at recent VC activity doesn't immediately yield an understanding of where the industry is heading.
Former California Energy Commission chair comments on bulk storage
The passage of California's AB 2514 means that the California Public Utilities Commission will seek to define "cost effective" storage and work with utilities on goals to achieve it. A former chairman of the California Energy Commission shares his views on issues surrounding the legislation and the topic in general.