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The Zeitgeist of Net Metering and Distributed Generation

Zeitgeist is a German word that roughly translates to the mood or spirit of a period of time.  A few commissioners at the recent National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC) event in Denver used the term in discussions about...

Posted July 30, 2013    

The Smart Grid Means Standing Room Only in Silicon Valley

What could generate a standing room only crowd in an upscale hotel in Menlo Park? It was an event focused on the Green Button initiative.  The agenda offered the opportunity to hear from Nick Sinai, the Deputy US Chief Technology Officer at the...

Posted July 23, 2013    

Re-Engineering Energy: A Dutch Perspective

Universities and other public/private initiatives in the Netherlands have very interesting activities focused in Smart Grid technology and services innovations.  I had the welcome opportunity to moderate an exchange of information and ideas...

Posted July 16, 2013    

Smart Grid: American Energy Independence

The Fourth of July has very special meaning to Americans as our official proclamation of political and economic independence, couched in terms of human rights.  2013 also marks the 150th anniversary of the bloodiest battle ever waged by...

Posted July 9, 2013    

Ten Startup Tips for Utility CEOs: The Final Five

Last week the Obama administration made news with their climate change initiatives.  The impacts on utilities are clear – as coal-burning power plants produce up to 40% of the CO2 emissions in this country alone – retiring the dirty ones and...

Posted July 2, 2013    

Ten Startup Tips for Utility CEOs

Just the other day I listened to a serial entrepreneur deliver a talk that summarized key learnings over 25 years of starting and building companies.  The presenter had stunning successes as well as a few expensive failures.  As I listened...

Posted June 25, 2013    

Getting the Smart Grid Started

Déjà vu is the experience of perceiving that something new has happened before.  It is commonly mentioned in comparisons of the electric utility industry with the old Bell Telephone system of a quarter century ago.  Hence my sense of déjà...

Posted June 18, 2013    

National Energy Policy Would Benefit the Insurance Industry

The utility industry gets much attention about sector-wide disruptions triggered by new Smart Grid regulatory policy, technology, and financial drivers on the path to grid modernization.  But the insurance sector is also facing real challenges...

Posted June 11, 2013    

A Pragmatic Approach to Transactive Energy and the Smart Grid

The Interstate Renewable Energy Council (IREC) just released a white paper that should be read by every utility regulator and state legislator interested in encouraging renewable generation sources into the grid.  The Integrated Distribution...

Posted June 4, 2013    

Making Buildings Part of the Smart Grid Solution

A very important conference occurred in Portland, Oregon last week – the Gridwise Architecture Council hosted the first international Transactive Energy Conference.  The topic of transactive energy is so new that there’s no formal definition...

Posted May 28, 2013    

Transforming Buildings into Prosumers with the Smart Grid

The Smart Grid will trigger many transformations.  Chief among them is the change in the relationship that consumers have with electricity.  We can transform from consumption roles to prosumption roles – producing electricity as well as...

Posted May 21, 2013    

Renewable Energy and the Smart Grid: The Natural Gas Conundrum

Natural gas seems to invoke a win/win perspective as the solution to all problems in some discussions about energy policy and the best fuels for electricity generation and transportation.  In these scenarios, the only downside is the pressure...

Posted May 14, 2013