NewEnergyNews: TODAY’S STUDY: Planning The New Energy Future


Gleanings from the web and the world, condensed for convenience, illustrated for enlightenment, arranged for impact...

While the OFFICE of President remains in highest regard at NewEnergyNews, this administration's position on climate change makes it impossible to regard THIS president with respect. Below is the NewEnergyNews theme song until 2020.

The challenge now: To make every day Earth Day.


  • FRIDAY WORLD HEADLINE-Al Gore On The Morality Of The Climate Fight
  • FRIDAY WORLD HEADLINE-Solar In Latin America Can Boom
  • FRIDAY WORLD HEADLINE-Scotland Buys Into Kite Wind
  • FRIDAY WORLD HEADLINE-Tesla Eyes The China EV Market


  • TTTA Thursday-What Does Exxon’s Carbon Tax Mean?
  • TTTA Thursday-The Rump Flails Factlessly At Wind
  • TTTA Thursday-New Energy To Get Bigger And Cheaper
  • TTTA Thursday-EVs To Be Cost-Competitive By 2025

  • ORIGINAL REPORTING: The Big Bonus From Plugging Cars In
  • ORIGINAL REPORTING: What About Nuclear?
  • ORIGINAL REPORTING: A Renewables Mandate To Beat The Peak

  • TODAY’S STUDY: Global New Energy Now
  • QUICK NEWS, June 20: What Power Mix Will Beat Climate Change (Part 1)?; What Power Mix Will Beat Climate Change (Part 2)?; New Energy Is NO Threat To U.S, Grid

  • TODAY’S STUDY: Why The U.S. Needs A Western Energy Market
  • QUICK NEWS, June 19: More Artists Join The Climate Fight; U.S. Power Just Hit 10% Wind And Solar; The Dangers Of Oil And Gas Drilling, Detailed

  • Weekend Video: Bill Maher Talks Jobs In Coal And The Real Problem
  • Weekend Video: A Farmer Defends WindPower
  • Weekend Video: The Secret To EV Success Is Charging Stations
  • --------------------------


    Anne B. Butterfield of Daily Camera and Huffington Post, f is an occasional contributor to NewEnergyNews


    Some of Anne's contributions:

  • Another Tipping Point: US Coal Supply Decline So Real Even West Virginia Concurs (REPORT), November 26, 2013
  • SOLAR FOR ME BUT NOT FOR THEE ~ Xcel's Push to Undermine Rooftop Solar, September 20, 2013
  • NEW BILLS AND NEW BIRDS in Colorado's recent session, May 20, 2013
  • Lies, damned lies and politicians (October 8, 2012)
  • Colorado's Elegant Solution to Fracking (April 23, 2012)
  • Shale Gas: From Geologic Bubble to Economic Bubble (March 15, 2012)
  • Taken for granted no more (February 5, 2012)
  • The Republican clown car circus (January 6, 2012)
  • Twenty-Somethings of Colorado With Skin in the Game (November 22, 2011)
  • Occupy, Xcel, and the Mother of All Cliffs (October 31, 2011)
  • Boulder Can Own Its Power With Distributed Generation (June 7, 2011)
  • The Plunging Cost of Renewables and Boulder's Energy Future (April 19, 2011)
  • Paddling Down the River Denial (January 12, 2011)
  • The Fox (News) That Jumped the Shark (December 16, 2010)
  • Click here for an archive of Butterfield columns


    Some details about NewEnergyNews and the man behind the curtain: Herman K. Trabish, Agua Dulce, CA., Doctor with my hands, Writer with my head, Student of New Energy and Human Experience with my heart




      A tip of the NewEnergyNews cap to Phillip Garcia for crucial assistance in the design implementation of this site. Thanks, Phillip.


    Pay a visit to the HARRY BOYKOFF page at Basketball Reference, sponsored by NewEnergyNews and Oil In Their Blood.

  • ---------------
  • WEEKEND VIDEOS, June 24-25:

  • Al Franken Explains Climate Science To Secretary Perry
  • John Oliver On Coal Jobs Absurdishness
  • Coal King Sues John Oliver For Defamation

    Monday, June 05, 2017

    TODAY’S STUDY: Planning The New Energy Future

    Beyond the Meter; Planning The Distributed Energy Future Volume Ii: A Case Study Of Integrated Der Planning By Sacramento Municipal Utility District

    Dan Wilson, Daisy Chung, Karlynn S. Cory, Vazken Kassakhian, May 2017 (Black & Veatch and the Smart Electric Power Alliance)

    Executive Summary

    This global white paper is a sequel to the previous white paper “Planning the Distributed Energy Future, Volume I” published in February 2016 by Black & Veatch and the Smart Electric Power Alliance (SEPA). The previous white paper described how electric utilities are beginning to proactively plan for a future in which distributed energy resources (DERs) will play a much larger role in balancing supply and demand on the electric grid. The current paper focuses on a case study of how a particular utility, the Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD) in California, is conducting the type of proactive DER planning that was described in the previous white paper.

    Like many other utilities, SMUD is seeing increasing adoption of customer-owned and third party-owned DERs in its territory, which is putting pressure on its traditional business model. SMUD estimates that its customers and third parties (on behalf of its customers) are spending or financing around $150 million to $200 million per year on DERs currently. This amount is more than the utility spends on centralized renewables to meet California’s 50 percent Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). Such DER growth creates risks of stranding past investments in utility infrastructure and changing the amount and type of SMUD’s future asset investments. However, it also creates opportunities for utilities to improve customer engagement, maximize the net benefits of DERs, and offer new products and services that can lead to new revenue streams.

    In order to address both the risks and opportunities presented by DERs, SMUD decided to conduct a study to understand the impact of DERs across its system in a more holistic manner than it had previously. This study integrated previous work from across the utility organization with new methods developed in conjunction with Black & Veatch. This integrated DER planning study (abbreviated as “iDER”) followed the same five-step proactive DER planning process that was described in the previous white paper, shown in Figure 1.1. Technologies included in the analysis were combined heat and power (CHP), distributed solar photovoltaics (PV), energy efficiency (EE), dispatchable and nondispatchable demand response (DR), distributed energy storage (ES), and electric vehicles (EV).

    Key recommendations for future analysis and next steps for SMUD, which may also serve as good examples for other utilities interested in iDER planning, include:

    Analysis Recommendations:

    • Incorporate iDER analysis into regular utility planning processes like the Integrated Resource Plan (IRP).

    • Clearly assign timetables and key responsibilities for each iDER analysis step, and form a core multidisciplinary analysis team.

    • Develop a robust DER customer database to track adoption, and research customer tradeoffs between multiple DER technologies as well as DER payback periods.

    • Model the entire distribution system, rather than a subset of feeders, and include more types of grid impacts and advanced device functionality, specifically more advanced smart inverter functions.

    • Test the mutual relationship between rate structures and customer DER adoption through sensitivity cases or multiple study iterations.

    • Ensure consistent assumptions and data are used across all portions of the iDER process (e.g., financing assumptions, DER targets, and analysis periods).

    Additional Planned Actions:

    • Use DER adoption forecasts for program targeting and development of new products and services.

    • Identify economic thresholds for future grid defection by SMUD customers.

    • Demonstrate locational value of DERs in real-world settings, such as deferral of distribution upgrades or ability to provide targeted ancillary services.

    • Explore new rate structures and targeted incentives to guide DER deployment, so customers install them in the right places, and operate them at the right times, to provide grid benefits.

    • Reconsider previous expectations about necessity of new distribution, transmission, and bulk generation infrastructure.

    • Implement better software tools for DER planning and operations, e.g. automated DER adoption forecasting and automated data transfer between modeling tools.

    • Deploy a customer engagement portal to assist consumers in considering DER options.

    • Expand use of actual DER adoption data to train forecast models.

    Broader Utility Implications Proactive DER planning of the type conducted by SMUD has broader implications for the electric utility industry. Utilities should consider several key issues when they undertake a DER planning process:

    • Locational costs and benefits of DERs, and potential cost savings for physical infrastructure

    • The software tools and IT investments required for proactive DER planning and operations

    • Utility organizational structures for DER planning, and investments in human resources

    • DER market structure establishment

    • The potential positive impact on the utility-customer relationship • The utility’s role in the grid of the future, and which business model(s) it will pursue

    SMUD, Black & Veatch, and SEPA encourage utilities to start early in implementing an integrated and proactive DER planning process to better understand the complex set of risks and opportunities arising in a world of rapidly increasing DER penetration. Though DER growth is unevenly distributed from one utility service territory to another, the pace of change within the utility industry as a whole is only accelerating. Utility leaders who recognize this, and position their organizations to benefit from the transition to a high-DER grid, are likely to reap significant rewards from their early efforts to plan for the distributed energy future.

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