Insights from our Editorial Team

  • Readers bite when 'engagement' is served
    Aug 11, 2011 | Phil Carson

    When you write about customer engagement, opinionators come out of the woodwork. And that's a good thing. We're all utility customers. And there are a lot of good ideas out there, many expressed by our readers, on how to get the job done.

    Comments: 2
  • Teed up: NERC CIP, the issue of scale and data visualization
    Aug 09, 2011 | Phil Carson

    If you run an electric utility, you will encounter the issues  that crop up during compliance with NERC CIP  requirements, with taking pilot programs to scale and in using data visualization tools. Intelligent Utility has addressed these subjects in webinars and articles with industry experts and those resources are offered here.

  • Grid modernization drives myriad issues
    Aug 09, 2011 | Phil Carson

    CIOs face myriad issues in implementing smart grid, from establishing the importance of cyber security within the organization to hiring the people who can make things work. An off-the-record discussion among CIOs reveals a few pressing issues that should be on IT's plate at any utility.

    Comments: 1
  • GridWise Alliance report: cross-functional skills needed
    smart grid workforce trends changing
    Aug 09, 2011 | Kate Rowland

    Just as Congressional focus returns to job creation, a KEMA report released recently for the GridWise Alliance argues that smart grid "presents an opportunity for the United States to develop a strong native industry around development, deployment, maintenance and servicing smart grid infrastructure and technology."  But it won't be a slam-dunk, by any means.

  • Boulderites lash city council, Xcel Energy
    Aug 05, 2011 | Phil Carson

    The ratepayers of Boulder, Colo., aren't sure they trust their city council or Xcel Energy or other players in the municipalization drama unfolding in this college town of 100,000. Letters to the editor of the local paper reveal many strands in that drama, with implications for large, investor-owned utilities concerned about customer satisfaction and possible defections from their customer base.

    Comments: 2
  • Former partners head to showdown over 'municipalization'
    Aug 04, 2011 | Phil Carson

    Boulder, Colo., seeks energy self-determination and a speedier shift to renewable energy than its current provider, Xcel Energy, is offering. And Xcel disputes that the latter assertion is possible. Here's a chronology of recent events  in Boulder's efforts to explore  municipalization, which could cost Xcel as much as $100 million in annual revenue.

    Comments: 5
  • Commission's docket reflects disparate views
    Aug 03, 2011 | Phil Carson

    A docket on consumer data privacy opened by the Public  Utilities Commission of Ohio reflects disparate views of privacy's importance and urgency. Our columnist argues that vigorous privacy practices should be embraced now. 

    Comments: 1
  • AMI not necessary for outage management
    Aug 02, 2011 | Kate Rowland

    The story of Snohomish County Public Utility District's path to smart grid technology implementation continues here, with a discussion with Chris Heimgartner, SNOPUD's assistant general manager, distribution and engineering services. Sometimes, AMI isn't the first-response answer, or the best answer, for a particular utility's customer needs.

    Comments: 4
  • PG&E, SCE and SDG&E band together to meet state mandates
    Aug 02, 2011 | Phil Carson

    California's three large investor-owned utilities have joined together to propose a five-year partnership with Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory to tackle the biggest challenges presented by the state's regulators, and recover the program's $150 million costs from ratepayers.

  • Central Vermont Public Service tackles AMI, automation, dynamic pricing
    Jul 31, 2011 | Phil Carson

    A small utility pursuing big goals finds that formal processes for external outreach and transparency coupled with internal change management can help employees succeed with their "day job" as well as a raft of smart grid-related projects. To learn what Central Vermont Public Service is doing to pull off this feat, read this column.