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Distribution Systems and Planning

Learning Modules in Spanish

In partnership with the U.S. Department of Energy, NARUC is pleased to provide utility commissions with dozens of training videos dubbed into Spanish on topics that include an introduction to regulation, distribution systems and planning, bulk power system issues, innovations in electricity modeling, smart grid and electric vehicle interoperability, and more. Videos range from 3 to 70 minutes long and feature expert speakers and NARUC members sharing their experiences.

Each linked video is shown as originally presented during a NARUC- or National Regulatory Research Institute (NRRI)-facilitated training event with voice-over added in Spanish.

The National Regulatory Research Institute (NRRI) hosts the Regulatory Training Initiative, providing comprehensive training to the regulatory community using a variety of learner-centric, flexible methods. This program will provide participants with an introduction to the principles and practice of regulation. The principles of regulation are a mix of engineering, financial, legal, accounting, and economic concepts and methods that provide the basis from which regulatory decisions are made. The practice of regulation focuses on the scope of regulatory decisions and how those decisions are made, including the mix of different types of expertise needed to mold those decisions.

Since 2017, NARUC has partnered with Lawrence Berkley National Laboratory (LBNL) to provide public utility commissions with regional, in-person and virtual training on electric distribution systems, utility distribution system planning, and approaches to state engagement in integrated distribution planning. Training sessions have been customized to each region and include topics such as: planning for resilience and reliability, scenario modeling, host capacity analysis, and locational net benefit approaches.

Trainees have included utility commissioners, state energy office leaders, consumer advocates, and staff working on grid modernization and distribution planning issues. Trainers have included experts from across the U.S. Department of Energy’s national laboratories, research and consulting firms, and independent consultants.

The Smart Grid Interoperability Learning Modules are short (less than 20-minute) videos for state utility commissions on the economics of interoperability, operational considerations for interoperability, and roles and responsibilities of state regulators.

Through NARUC and the National Council on Electricity Policy, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory offered four training sessions for utility commissioners, state energy officials, state legislators, air agency officials, and utility consumer advocates. Participants learned: (1) What modeling tools and methods are available to plan distribution and bulk power systems with distributed energy resources (DERs), including comprehensive planning approaches. (2) How utilities analyze utility-scale and distributed storage in integrated resource planning, ways state officials can review the analysis and how to improve evaluation of energy storage planning. (3) How to assess technical and economic impacts of DERs for distribution and bulk power systems, and what changes are needed in load forecasting. (4) Ways to improve planning throughout the electricity system in the face of climate change.