Commentary

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    May 22, 2013 | Eric Hahn P.E.
    In February of this year the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' Engineer Research and Development Center - Coastal Hydraulics Lab (ERDC-CHL) reported that it had deployed the largest Wave Energy Converter (WEC) in the US at their Field Research Facility in Duck, NC. According to their posting, their facility hosted a wave surge actuated device (a system in the "onshore systems" category of pendulor devices, as described by the Department of Energy). The Navy has also tested a wave energy device (more in the general DOE category of "offshore systems") at Marine Corps Base Kaneohe (MCBH). According to a Navy Times posting of last year, the intent is to provide wave produced power to Marine Corps Base Kaneohe, HI by 2014.
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    May 20, 2013 | Marc Tannenbaum
    Demand Response (DR) in the Texas restructured market seems to be on verge of becoming the next big thing. Unfortunately, it has been on the verge of being the next big thing for quite a while. The mounting evidence, however, seems to support the democratization of DR by enabling technologies that address the greatest source of power reserves in the state: Peak Residential Demand.
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    May 17, 2013 | Eric Leiserson
    Going green has become a topic of ongoing importance, with consumers increasingly seeking out businesses that employ environmentally responsible practices. Many environmental initiatives, including the delivery of renewable energy and the reduction of carbon emissions, are high-level long-term goals, however, utility companies should not overlook another green technology that resonates with consumers: electronic bill payment.
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    May 15, 2013 | Arijit Mandal
    Smart meters, once believed to be readily acceptable to regulators, utilities, and consumers, are no longer the same due to growing skepticism about smart meters for health, privacy, and security issues. Every utility is now facing the challenge on how to ensure smooth transition from a legacy to a smarter utility.
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    May 13, 2013 | Michael Rovito
    Paul Torcellini of the National Renewable Energy Labs (NREL) gave a presentation last year on net zero energy (NZE) buildings to folks from NYSERDA, the NY Department of Public Service, consultants, and others who buzz about in New York's efficiency circles. Towards the end, he drew a graph. Along the x-axis were energy savings, and along the y-axis were costs.
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    Apr 29, 2013 | Sarah Battaglia
    A new trend in the electric vehicle industry is emerging. Several states are proposing a gas tax on vehicles produced in 2015 or later that get 55 miles per gallon or more. Cars like the Chevy Volt, Nissan Leaf, and Toyota Prius are just some of the cars that will incur this per-mile fee.
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    Apr 29, 2013 | Alan Ross
    In the middle of the biggest game of the year with millions of fans watching and billions of dollars on the line, the power suddenly goes out in the stadium. Your system failure may not be as public or costly as this one but you still want to avoid it at all costs!
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    Apr 29, 2013 | Gay Gordon-Byrne
    Electric Utilities are accustomed to managing their own equipment repairs. This is going to be increasingly challenging as more and more "digital" devices enter the grid. There are five reasons that digital device repair is going to present new challenges.
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    Apr 22, 2013 | Jessica Kennedy
    Ireland has recently made news with its efforts in energy efficiency and sustainability. According to the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI), 2012 was a landmark year for energy efficiency and sustainability in Ireland. The SEAI reports energy savings totaling $35 million (equal to 670GWh and 160,000 metric tons of CO2 emissions avoided), and about 4,000 jobs preserved in the construction and energy industries.
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    Apr 15, 2013 | Davis Swan
    For more than 100 years electricity generation and distribution systems have evolved to become one of the most reliable services imaginable - one which has been the foundation of the industrial expansion and prosperity of the developed world. Our society is totally dependent upon this and even relatively short and localized interruptions in the power supply (for example during the Sandy superstorm) cause major disruptions to everyday life.