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Negawatt Providers Seek a Mandate

21 Nov

California regulators and policymakers say they want to see increases in demand response to reduce peak load and help balance out intermittent renewable resources. Despite the lip service, the amount of negawatt capacity reaped from the residential and commercial/industrial sectors has fallen since 2011, particularly from third-party aggregators working with the investor-owned utilities. “There is […]

CPUC Continues Annual $13.5 M Negawatt Pilots

26 Oct

California energy regulators voted unanimously to continue funding short-term private utility demand response pilots to boost anemic third-party demand response programs. The pilots “will help shape how we move forward” on third-party programs, said California Public Utilities Commission member Martha Guzman Aceves, who authored the alternate decision approved Oct. 26. She said the goal is […]

CA Lags on Demand Response, Report Finds

26 Oct

California is working to make better use of demand response strategies for meeting peak loads, but the Golden State is hardly a leader in the effort, according to a report released Oct. 25 by the Smart Electric Power Alliance. While the report credited the state’s demand response auction mechanism adopted by the California Public Utilities […]

Undercurrents: Long-term Nuclear Waste Disposal Remains Stalled

26 Sep

State and local representatives pressed for federal solutions to the problem of mounting radioactive waste at nuclear power plants, including the closed down San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station, during a House Oversight & Government Reform Subcommittee on the Interior, Energy, & Environment Sept. 26. David Victor, chair of the SONGS Community Engagement Panel, told the […]

FERC’s New Chair Walks Fine Line

14 Sep

Neil Chatterjee, the new Federal Energy Regulatory Commission chair, signaled a subtle shift in the commission’s focus to maintaining grid reliability as more renewable energy comes online, during a Sept. 14 House Energy & Commerce Energy Subcommittee hearing. The commission under former President Barack Obama highlighted the role of matching power demand with available energy […]

Undercurrents: CA Sues Feds for Halting Penalty Increase for Fuel Efficiency Violations

12 Sep

California Attorney General Xavier Becerra filed suit against the Trump Administration Sept. 11 for delaying a rule increasing the fine on car manufacturers that fail to meet federal fuel efficiency standards. “More fuel-efficient cars on our roads means cleaner air, better overall health for our children, and savings at the pump for consumers,” Becerra said. “We will […]

Heat Brings New Historic Peaks for Edison & LADWP

6 Sep

Triple digit temperatures caused Southern California Edison and the Los Angeles Department of Water & Power to set new peak load records last week. The blistering heat drove up electricity demand in and outside Southern California even though the high loads were tamped down somewhat by demand response programs. Edison’s new peak load reached 23,508 […]

CAISO Eases Market Rules for Demand Response

27 Jul

The California Independent System Operator’s board July 26 approved measures to enhance the ability of demand response resources to participate in the grid operator’s market. The board voted in support of rules that specifically include expanding the baseline that evaluates the performance of distributed resources and energy storage in CAISO’s market.  Currently, CAISO uses one […]

CEC Faces More Pressure to Reject Puente Power Project

20 Jul

Opposition to NRG’s proposed Puente power plant at the site of an existing power facility on the beach in Oxnard is continuing to build. Ventura County Supervisor Linda Parks declared her “strong opposition,” and along with others, urged relying on preferred resources. “As renewable energy has become cost-effective and abundant, there is an important question […]

Agencies Seek to Get a Grip on Self Generation

3 Jul

State energy agencies and the grid operator are grappling with how to forecast and better measure growing levels of distributed renewable energy flowing into the distribution and transmission systems. Unlike the high voltage system, power flows to and from lower voltage power lines are less transparent. No “adequate methods exist” for forecasting how distributed energy […]

“Baseload Power” Concept Called Antiquated

26 Jun

In advance of a Department of Energy report expected to highlight an ongoing need for baseload power from nuclear and coal plants, an environmental group June 26 released a study claiming the very notion of baseload power has become “outdated. “The reality is that baseload power is not a technical term and is not needed […]

Ventura Clean Power Alternatives Study Begins

22 Jun

The grid operator late last week agreed to study whether preferred resources—including renewable power and energy storage and efficiency—could be substituted for a proposed fossil fuel power plant in Oxnard to meet Ventura County’s power needs. Replacement power is necessary because two old power plants there are slated to shut down at the end of […]

Opinionated: Transformation at The Grid’s Edge

19 Jun

By Fereidoon Sioshansi Donald Rumsfeld, the former US Defense Secretary, referring to developments following the Iraq invasion famously said, in war, “Stuff happens,” suggesting that much of what happens is unpredictable and not necessarily pleasant. Similarly, in the electric power sector these days, stuff is happening – generally characterized by buzzwords including industry transformation, grid […]

SHORTS

14 Jun

In a change of tune, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt told a Congressional panel June 15 that he plans not to challenge California’s authority to set tighter automotive emissions standards than the federal standards. Earlier this year, he suggested EPA might review whether the state’s power to set the standards, now in place for almost 50 […]

So CA Preferred Resources & Coastal Plant Replacements Lag

22 May

Southern California faces no shortage of generation or power import capacity this summer although actual deployment of “preferred resources” procured by investor-owned utilities is lagging. However, a shortage of natural gas due to the ongoing closure of the Aliso Canyon natural gas storage field could pose a risk to energy reliability this summer. That scenario […]

SHORTS

19 Jan

The Los Angeles Department of Water & Power board of commissioners approved a customer bill of rights for the muni’s customers on Jan. 17, as expected. The bill of rights, promoted by Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, places response time deadlines for the department in hooking up new customers, helping people on the phone, and […]

Researchers Envision Demand Response Shaping, Shedding, & Shimmying Load

1 Dec

Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory researchers unveiled a final draft assessment of the potential to bolster reliance on demand response as a way meeting the state’s variable need for power. The study shows more than 10 GW of potential that utilities and the grid operator could rely on as solid resources by 2025. It notes that new […]

End of Season Energy & Climate Bill Signings

6 Oct

The governor signed several more energy bills before the end of September deadline. Other measures passed by the full Legislature become law without Gov. Jerry Brown’s signature. (more…)

CPUC Bars Incentives for Fossil Fuel Demand Response

29 Sep

The California Public Utilities Sept. 29 prohibited demand response incentives for fossil fueled resources, under a rulemaking approved on a 4-0 vote. (more…)

CPUC Sees Promise in Integrated Resource Planning

16 Jun

State energy regulators are beginning to transition California’s electric utilities to integrated resource planning to guide procurement of power in place of the existing California Public Utilities Commission’s long-term procurement process. (more…)