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Storage Clashes With State Goals

15 Nov

Battery electricity storage systems installed with California Public Utilities Commission-ordered subsidies are boosting peak load and increasing greenhouse gas emissions, according to analyses discussed at a Nov. 15 commission meeting. CPUC Regulatory Analyst Patrick Doherty called the evaluation “bad news.” Figuring out how to ensure systems help achieve the state’s goals of reducing emissions and […]

Energy Bills Signed

3 Oct

Gov. Jerry Brown signed a half dozen energy-related measures into law, including ones to promote energy storage, enhance utility safety, temper utility service disconnections for non-payment, and further reform the California Public Utilities Commission. Brown vetoed one bill that would have dedicated a utility penalty for sparking a wildfire to fire prevention and fighting efforts. […]

The Buzz

31 Aug

A week that began with record heat and a near record demand for power ends even hotter with a forecast of a new all-time record peak demand for electricity in California. The grid operator calls for conservation. PG&E calls for flashlights. Decentralized solar energy coupled with storage and smart controls can lower the cost of […]

Grid Watch: Heat Triggers Near Record Power Demand

29 Aug

As the heat wave over California was poised to intensify Aug. 29, the grid operator forecast a near record load. It restricted maintenance work on power facilities to make sure all resources are available to service utility customers. The California Independent System Operator forecast a peak load of 48,291 MW on Aug. 29, up from […]

The Buzz

25 Aug

State utility regulators okayed a shift in the peak pricing period to later in the day for San Diego Gas & Electric customers. Industry advocates warn it erodes the economic advantages of rooftop solar. Secretary of Energy Rick Perry gets an education about how the grid operates. A Department of Energy staff report he requested […]

Electric Cars & Solar Roofs Driving Energy Demand

3 Aug

California’s future demand for electricity from utilities—and to some extent natural gas—will hinge on how fast electric vehicles and solar rooftops advance in the marketplace, according to the California Energy Commission’s latest forecast. Solar and electric vehicles, according to Chris Kavalic, Energy Commission researcher, “make the most difference in our forecast.” The commission previewed its […]

CPUC Adopts 2018 Supply Cushion & Reconsiders Community Energy Fee

29 Jun

The California Public Utilities Commission June 29 approved 5-0 resource adequacy requirements and flexible capacity obligations for electric utilities in 2018. The decision rejected considering multi-year resource adequacy requirements requiring a 15 percent supply cushion on grounds it would have delayed a decision. Commissioner Liane Randolph, the presiding member, added, “We didn’t feel it was […]

Bills Focus on Higher Renewables, Lower Carbon & Rising Utility Bills

29 Mar

Pending legislation would require meeting peak energy demand with rising levels of alternative electricity resources and mandate that the California Air Resources Board factor in the social costs of climate change gases in its policies. Under AB 378 by Assemblymember Cristina Garcia (D-Downey), the Air Board must factor in the social cost of greenhouse gases […]

JUICE: Efficiency Pays, Crime Doesn’t

1 Feb

Daily Show host Trevor Noah knew from birth about the importance of conserving resources. He grew up in poverty in South Africa. His mother, for instance, had to stretch each gallon of gas pumped into their battered, used car to the max. She coasted down hills, turned off the engine in traffic jams, and had […]

Pilots to Encourage Non Residential Ratepayers to Shift to Mid-day Use Okayed

10 Nov

State energy regulators this week unanimously approved Southern California Edison’s and San Diego Gas & Electric’s small pilots to test midday price discounts to cut energy at times of peak power use. Discounts will be offered to up to 200 industrial, commercial and agriculture ratepayers. These energy users, who have mandatory time-of-use rates, are being […]

Coastal Power Plant Closures Could Be Delayed Under Proposal

1 Sep

With Southern California projected to face electricity generation deficits in the years to come, one way to ensure short-term reliability could be to delay the planned closures of some coastal power plants that use once-through cooling technology, energy experts said during a workshop this week. (more…)

JUICE: Grid Stands Up to Record Heat Despite Aliso Canyon Risks

23 Jun

Southern California came through its first major test of summer absent the SoCal Gas Aliso Canyon natural storage field with no major power blackouts or rotating outages. (more…)

CAISO Expects Smooth Summer

31 Mar

Summer power supply reliability appears to be solid, according to the California Independent System Operator’s preliminary forecast presented to its board March 25. (more…)

Mixing and Matching Vehicles and the Grid

17 Dec

Tapping into the benefits of integrating electric vehicles into an evolving grid raises a host of technological challenges. Known and emerging challenges are the subject of ongoing research aimed at making the governor’s target of a million zero emission vehicles in California by 2020 a reality. (more…)

Lower CA Energy Demand Expected

15 Oct

California energy demand and annual growth rates are estimated to be below 2014 forecasts, according to the California Energy Commission’s draft 2015 Integrated Energy Policy Report released this week. (more…)

Heat Wave Spikes Power Demand

3 Sep

Temperatures soaring into triple digits in inland areas up and down the state late last week spiked demand again, as they did earlier this month during a strong heat wave. (more…)