Insights from our Editorial Team

  • Pecan Street focuses on customer side of meter
    Feb 21, 2011 | Phil Carson

    A smart grid project in Austin, Texas, focuses on the customer side of the meter as the means to discover what will drive grid modernization and new policies and business models that go with it. The Pecan Street Project does not expose local ratepayers to risk and it seeks to take its lessons learned and best practices to the rest of the country.

    Comments: 5
  • NARUC's accelerated agenda aimed at IOUs
    Feb 18, 2011 | Phil Carson

    If you manage an investor-owned utility or serve as a state utility commissioner, you need to read this column on the development of consumer data privacy best practices, which begins March 3. That process may very well determine how you approach the subject and yesterday isn't soon enough to tune in.

    Comments: 5
  • Feb 17, 2011 | Christopher Perdue

    Our readers make the important point that each utility has unique attributes that need to be understood in order to have useful systems. For an OMS to provide the highest amount of value, utilities must have an accurate operational model and an appropriate input from field resources about the information they need to do their job. Moreover, utilities should be prepared for the OMS integration with AMI and other smart grid solutions by having a solid integration/response plan and understanding of what the responsibility of each solution/individual involved.

    Comments: 1
  • The National Action Plan and the PowerCentsDC program
    Feb 17, 2011 | Phil Carson

    Early stakeholder collaboration in smart grid-related projects isn't a pipe dream, it's described in a new case study by the National Action Plan (NAP) Coalition. We explore the rationale for this sort of approach and examine the NAP Coalition's case study approach, designed to allow readers to extract lessons learned and best practices.

  • A conversation with Ann Cavoukian, Ontario's privacy commissioner
    Feb 16, 2011 | Phil Carson

    A data privacy advocate suggests the utility industry think in terms of "custody and control" of consumer data, rather than "ownership." Ann Cavoukian, Ontario's information and privacy commissioner, suggests that getting data privacy right lays the foundation for trust and consumer involvement.

  • A conversation with Ann Cavoukian, Ontario's privacy commissioner
    Feb 15, 2011 | Phil Carson

    A fundamental human quality such as trust may well figure into the success of grid modernization efforts. One advocate argues that utilities had better embed data privacy into their systems now or risk losing their customers' trust. A two-part conversation with Ann Cavoukian, Ontario's commissioner of information and privacy, explores the topic.

  • Colorado PUC finally explains rationale
    Feb 14, 2011 | Phil Carson

    The Colorado Public Utility Commission finally issued its written rationale for capping cost recovery for Xcel Energy's SmartGridCity project. The commission rejected all third-party objections, offered its own logic and imposed requirements on Xcel that our columnist argues should have been imposed from the start. In the end, consumers may still be on the hook for the project's cost overruns.

  • Readers provide their input on a teachable moment
    Feb 11, 2011 | Christopher Perdue

    While our industry can't eliminate power outages, with the proper plans, processes and systems   utilities can better inform customers, identify the reason for an outage and resolve the issue more efficiently.

    Comments: 4
  • Consumer engagement, outage management and privacy draw comments
    Feb 11, 2011 | Phil Carson

    Our readers have opinions and the arrows flew last week over columns we wrote on engaging consumers, outage management and privacy issues. Sometimes readers agreed with us, but for the most part, they had their way with the forum and straightened us out. Don't miss this column full of intelligent and occasionally prickly commentary from those who know best.

    Comments: 1
  • Part two: a conversation with a smart grid thought leader
    Feb 10, 2011 | Phil Carson

    In the second part of a two-part interview, eMeter's Chris King discusses privacy initiatives, Zigbee vs. Wi-Fi and the potential for federal energy legislation in the year now unfolding.

    Comments: 2