Commentary

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    Feb 12, 2007 | Roger Feldman
    Suddenly it's 1970. There's a war going on that is increasingly unpopular. Nuclear power is coming back. Air pollution (in the guise of global warming) is on the tips of everyone's tongues. The price of oil is skittering around without real connection to underlying fundamental cause of daily events. We're even talking about "energy independence" again.
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    Feb 09, 2007 | Jim Norton
    Nationwide, the media continue to alert the public to price fluctuations as they open their utility bills this winter. According to the Energy Information Administration, projected changes in heating expenditures relative to last winter reflect both price and weather changes, but lower expected prices for natural gas should result in lower heating bills for many American households.
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    Feb 08, 2007 | Christopher Russell
    Manufacturers are keenly aware of energy market volatility and its impact on their earnings. Current policy discussion merely calls for relief in the form of increased energy supplies, to be achieved by stepping up power plant construction and through more drilling and digging of fossil fuels. Certainly, new energy supplies must be secured.
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    Feb 05, 2007 | Gary Weseloh
    A former colleague of mine had a habit of sitting at his desk muttering "what to do, what to do, what to do." It is the essence of what we are hearing a lot of today as utilities and municipalities attempt to get a handle on what they must to do to remain effective, efficient organizations in today's uncertain and very challenging environment.
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    Jan 26, 2007 | Warren B. Causey
    Most people are aware that the electric distribution and transmission systems are aging and subject to periodic failure -- with some of those failures being rather spectacular. But that's just one side of the coin.
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    Jan 19, 2007 | Jennie King
    There is a well-known saying that knowledge is power. For many customers of Phoenix-based Salt River Project (SRP), it's becoming increasing clear that knowledge also results in saving power. Those customers are enrolled in SRP's M-Power program - the largest residential pre-pay metering program in North America.
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    Jan 12, 2007 | Dennis Smith
    Utilities have moved in different directions with their strategies for card payment acceptance for electricity and natural gas purchases. After much debate, more investor-owned utilities have warmed up to the idea of direct card acceptance while municipals and cooperatives, those which have traditionally taken card payments directly from consumers, recently shifted toward third-party vendors as a way to process card transactions.
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    Jan 10, 2007 | Roger Arnold
    In parts 1 and 2, we looked at supply management and load management as mechanisms for coping with the variability of renewable energy sources. In this final part, we look at possibilities for energy storage - the ultimate solution for the long term, once the burning of fossil fuels is no longer an option.
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    Jan 08, 2007 | David Saxby
    Every utility company has an opportunity to exceed its customers' expectations of service during any interaction. The small things your utility does, from the initial greeting through the close of the interaction, are what your customers use to decide whether you did a good job.
  • Jan 05, 2007 | Guerry Waters
    Most utilities today manage their IT portfolios by mixing multi-business software applications with some applications that are utility-specific. It makes sense. When it comes to business processes involving supply contracts, general ledger or human resource administration, utilities operate much like their own business customers.