Past Innovation Webinars
A New Approach to Understanding the Economic Impacts of Electric Outages, October 14, 2021
The costs of widespread and long-duration power interruptions are generally not or only incompletely considered in utility planning activities. Lawrence Berkely National Laboratory (LBNL) researchers will describe a new approach for estimating the economic costs of widespread and long-duration power interruptions. This method, which LBNL calls "POET" (Power Outage Economics Tool), involves using survey responses from utility customers to calibrate a regional economic model that can estimate both the direct and indirect costs of these events. Including better estimates of these costs will enhance both the comprehensiveness and completeness of the considerations relied on to support utility planning decisions, especially on grid hardening strategies and other capital-intensive investments in electricity sector resilience. LBNL will conclude with a discussion about how POET is being piloted in Commonwealth Edison's service territory, then feature an emerging public-private partnership to update LBNL’s Interruption Cost Estimate (ICE) Calculator.
Moderator: Ashton Raffety, Senior Technical Program Officer, NARUC
- Peter Larson, Staff Scientist/Department Head, Electricity Markets and Policy Department, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Enabling Robust Stakeholder Engagement at Public Utility Commissions, September 24, 2021
As the power grid evolves and states set new goals for clean energy, equity, resilience, and other objectives relating to energy infrastructure, public utility commissions (PUCs) across the country are increasingly faced with making decisions that are complex, broad in impact, and intersectional across an array of issues. In this challenging decision-making environment, some PUCs are embarking on stakeholder engagement processes that not only prioritize affordable, safe, and reliable utility services, but also consider these newer and more expansive policy objectives. These emerging processes have the potential to enable more informed decision-making by creating inclusive forums for stakeholder participation, but they must be well-designed to achieve intended outcomes. This webinar will explore the approaches PUCs can take to create robust and inclusive stakeholder processes by addressing:Key decision points for commissions to consider in planning stakeholder engagement processes; Lessons learned and best practices for stakeholder engagement; and; Principles for participatory justice at PUCs.
Moderator: Chair Megan Decker, Oregon Public Utilities Commission
- Commissioner Obi Linton, Maryland Public Service Commission
- Chandra Farley, CEO, ReSolve Consulting and Environment & Climate Justice Chair, Georgia NAACP
- Jasmine McAdams, Program Officer NARUC
Virtual Power Plants In The 20s: Moving From Theory To Practice, August 12, 2021
Virtual power plants (VPPs) are systems that manage a network of distributed energy resources (DERs) of various types across a geographic area, aggregating control of those resources to provide and be compensated for energy, capacity, and/or services to the grid. VPPs have been discussed within electricity circles for more than 20 years, with the first named installation in Germany in 2012. In recent years, increasing advances in distributed technologies, sensors and controls, communications, and automation have led to an increase in VPP installations across Europe, Australia, Japan, and the United States. During this webinar, participants will hear from speakers who have been analyzing, developing, and operating VPPs. The discussion will focus on specific examples where DERs are being aggregated to act as resources and/or grid assets in addition to providing customer benefits. We will explore how the installed VPPs are working from both an operational/technical and economic/policy perspective. Audience members will have an opportunity to ask questions.
Moderator: Lea Márquez Peterson, Chairwoman, Arizona Corporation Commission
- Dr. Gabrielle Kuiper, Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis, IEEFA
- Cisco DeVries, CEO, OhmConnect
- Graham Turk, Innovation Strategist, Green Mountain Power
Balancing the Clean Grid: Reliability and Renewable Energy, June 17, 2021
Historically, synchronous fossil fuel and nuclear generators with spinning reserves have provided a suite of reliability services, like frequency response and voltage control, to keep the grid running smoothly. But as generation from nonsynchronous resources like solar, wind, and energy storage grows, with these resources expected to account for more than 80 percent of new electric generation capacity coming online this year, key questions are emerging for those responsible for grid reliability. Namely, what are the reliability implications and capabilities of inverter-based resources? What strategies do grid operators employ to maintain reliability while integrating more renewable energy? Do state energy regulators need to rethink how reliability services are defined and procured? And what should regulators be considering to make sure their states’ evolving power grids can deliver reliable and clean power? This webinar is part of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners – Center for Partnerships & Innovation’s monthly webinar series, exploring timely topics in electricity regulation. The webinar will be open to the public with the intended audience being NARUC’s membership of state energy regulators and regulatory staff. Time will be reserved for Q and A.
Moderator: Commissioner Kim O’Guinn, Arkansas Public Service Commission
- Mark Ahlstrom, VP, Renewable Energy Policy, NextEra Energy Resources & NextEra Analytics, Inc. and President, Energy Systems Integration Group
- Drake Bartlett, Senior Market Operations Analyst, Xcel Energy
- Julia Matevosyan, Lead Planning Engineer, Resource Adequacy, Electric Reliability Council of Texas
- Sheila Tandon Manz, PhD, Director, Decarbonization Planning, GE Energy Consulting
This webinar will highlight public utility commission (PUC) workforce challenges and how PUCs can more effectively recruit and retain employees or otherwise acquire niche expertise to accomplish goals. As the energy sector evolves, so will PUC’s need for qualified individuals with technical expertise who are dedicated to public service. Join this webinar to hear about PUC workforce challenges and solutions firsthand, including new energy sector workforce development projects being undertaken by the U.S. Department of Energy.
Moderator: David A. Alexander – Legal Counsel to the Chairman, Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission, and Chair, NARUC Staff Subcommittee on Critical Infrastructure
- Commissioner Susan Duffy, Kansas Corporation Commission
- David Parsons, Chief of Policy and Research, Hawaii Public Utilities Commission
- Brandi Martin, SLTT Program Manager, Office of Cybersecurity, Energy Security, and Emergency Response, U.S. Department of Energy
Rooftop solar, and distributed energy resources (DER) generally, represent an integral and growing part of the electric grid. Increasingly, these resources are connecting to the grid to provide services for grid reliability purposes. Industry standards exist to ensure interoperability but cybersecurity has been an afterthought, even as the threat of crippling cyber attacks is growing. Complicating the landscape, a recent report by the GAO notes that the impacts of such attacks involving DER on the distribution grid is uncertain, making the identification of effective cybersecurity measures challenging. Join this webinar to learn more about the drivers accelerating solar adoption, the new cybersecurity risk landscape for solar and efforts underway to address the challenges, and the roles that state commissions and energy offices play in shaping the future of grid reliability, security, and resilience.
Moderator: Lynn Costantini, Deputy Director, NARUC
- Jeremiah Miller - Systems Integration Technology Manager, Solar Energy Technologies Office, U.S. Department of Energy
- Kirsten Verclas - Program Director, Electricity and CATSS Project Lead, National Association of State Energy Officials
Public utility commissions and electric utilities across the country are increasingly incorporating equity considerations in their decision-making processes: ensuring that the costs and benefits of energy infrastructure are fairly distributed among customers without disproportionately impacting any subsets of ratepayers. For example, following the passage of the Clean Energy Transformation Act in Washington State, the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission recently adopted rules requiring regulated utilities to consider equity in purchasing practices and in the state’s transition to clean energy. As equity becomes a key factor in energy decisions, regulators, utilities, and other stakeholders are exploring and considering strategies to leverage data in a way that best serves over-burdened and vulnerable populations. This webinar will explore approaches to the collection, reporting, and analysis of energy sector data to empower energy equity. The discussion will address questions such as: How can regulators define and assess equity in the energy sector? How can we measure equitable progress towards decarbonization? What are the ramifications of utility data reporting requirements?
Moderator: Commissioner Ann Rendahl, Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission
- Subin DeVar, Co-Founder, Initiative for Energy Justice
- Lauren Ross, Director of Policy, American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy
- Hassan Shaban, Principal, Empower Dataworks
- Mariel Thuraisingham, Clean Energy Policy Lead, Front and Centered
Artificial intelligence (AI) tools, often dependent on enabling investments in cloud computing or software-as-a-service platforms, hold great potential for enhancing energy utility service. However, AI tools are relatively new to utilities and state energy regulators, and more information is needed to build a track record on the costs and benefits of AI investments. On this webinar, panelists will present their views on the value of AI to utilities and customers, important concerns regulators should keep in mind when considering AI proposals, and barriers to broader AI use across the utility industry.
Moderator: Chairman Willie Phillips, District of Columbia Public Service Commission
- Rick Cutter, Founder & Managing Director, Cloud for Utilities
- Heather Feldman, Director, R&D, Electric Power Research Institute
- David Victor, Nonresident Senior Fellow, Foreign Policy, Energy Security and Climate Initiative, Brookings Institution and Professor of International Relations, School of Global Policy and Strategy, University of California, San Diego
Commercial & industrial (C&I) customers collectively use over half of the electricity generated in the U.S. Businesses of all sectors and sizes are increasingly setting ambitious corporate goals to use clean or renewable energy to power their operations and facilities, including roughly half of the Fortune 500. In 2018, corporate buyers accounted for over one-fifth of the renewable energy power purchase agreements (PPAs) in the U.S. and have collectively deployed over 23 GW of new renewable energy over the last 5 years. At the same time, 23 states and DC have implemented statewide greenhouse gas targets and 50 utilities have noted carbon or emission reduction goals. However, different policy and market structures constrain options available to C&I customers to buy the renewable energy they want across markets in the US. For example, RPS expansions have the potential to green the grid for all customers, but do not necessarily enable C&I customers to go beyond state established renewable energy targets. Speakers will discuss regulatory barriers to expanding C&I purchasing and opportunities to resolve these challenges.
Moderator: Commissioner Ann Rendahl, Washington
- Chairman Carrie Zalewski, Illinois
- Bryn Baker, Director, Policy Innovation, Renewable Energy Buyers Alliance
- Jeff Riles, Global Energy Markets and Policy, Google
- Mariah Kennedy, Head of Data Center Energy Strategy (Global), Microsoft
Where the Wind Blows: Offshore Wind Outlook for State Regulators, November 19, 2020
Announcements of new offshore wind developments and state strategies for growth seem to be increasing every week. This webinar will share a snapshot of the industry and highlight motivations and approaches for encouraging growth in the Mid-Atlantic and New England regions. Speakers will also discuss key utility regulatory barriers and potential drivers for offshore wind.
Moderator: David Littell, Senior Advisor, RAP
- Joe Martens, Director, Alliance of Clean Energy NY
- Hon. Jason Stanek, Chairman, Maryland Public Service Commission
- Frederick Zalcman, Head of Government and Regulatory Affairs, Orsted
Emerging Possbilities for Bulk Energy Storage, October 22, 2020
Currently, many new storage devices, particularly batteries, are built to support peak load. However, projects are emerging that will provide energy storage support for the bulk energy system. Commissions face decisions that impact seasonal balancing, resource adequacy, load firming, and other long-term planning. On this webinar, we will discuss emerging technical possibilities for providing storage support to the bulk energy system, featuring takeaways from an upcoming 1-MW, 150-hour aqueous battery pilot project with Great River Energy and Form Energy. Greg Padden, Director of Resource Planning and Markets at Great River Energy will discuss their decision-making on conducting the pilot project. Additionally, regulatory considerations and market barriers for bulk energy storage will be highlighted by Jason Houck, Policy and Regulatory Affairs Lead at Form Energy. The panel will open with recent research from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, presented by Josh Eichman, on the value and cost-competitiveness of seasonal energy storage technologies for the integration of wind and solar. To close, Heidi Ratz, U.S. Electricity Markets Manager at the World Resources Institute, will discuss policy considerations for the role of long-duration storage. This webinar will be moderated by Chairman Philip L. Bartlett II, Maine.
Moderator: Chairman Philip L. Bartlett II, Maine
- Josh Eichman, Senior Research Engineer, National Renewable Energy Laboratory
- Greg Padden, Director of Resource Planning & Markets, Great River Energy
- Jason Houck, Policy and Regulatory Affairs Lead, Form Energy
- Heidi Bishop Ratz, U.S. Electricity Markets, Manager
Leveraging Behavioral Strategies to Drive Building Decarbonization, September 17, 2020
How can we optimize the use of energy efficiency (EE) programming to meet state goals? Based on a recent report released by Oracle and the Analysis Group, panelists will discuss strategic energy efficiency programming, including the short and long-term benefits of investing in structural energy efficiency (SEE) and behavioral energy efficiency (BEE) programs.
Moderator: President Joseph Fiordaliso, New Jersey Board of Public Utilities
- Paul Hibbard, Principal, Analysis Group
- Kristin Munsch, Director of Regulatory and Customer Strategy, National Grid
- Mary Sprayregen, Director of Regulatory Affairs and Market Development, Oracle Utilities
Renewable Energy Technologies on the Horizon, August 20, 2020
When regulators consider “renewables,” this often refers to the significant advances in wind and solar energy. This exciting discussion, “Renewable Technologies on the Horizon” will highlight the distinct resources that could be the next household names in renewable innovation. Featured speakers include Jason Feldman, Green Era Co-Founder, Cristina Negri, Director of the Environmental Science (EVS) Division at Argonne National Labs, and Dr. Ufuk Erdal, Senior Vice President, Water Reuse National Technology Director at ARCADIS and Director at the Water Research Foundation. Each expert will share their perspective and experience in how renewable natural gas, sustainable agriculture, and direct potable use water filtration, respectively, might significantly alter how states continue to employ renewable resources.
Moderator: Commissioner Maria Bocanegra, Illinois
- Jason Feldman, Co-Founder, Green Era Sustainability
- Cristina Negri, Director of the Environmental Science (EVS) Division at Argonne National Labs
- Dr. Ufuk Erdal, Senior Vice President, Water Reuse National Technology Director at ARCADIS, Director at the Water Research Foundation
Historically, determining the energy savings associated with energy efficiency programs has been, at best, an annual task, with sometimes tenuous feedback loops for meaningful program improvements. Recent advances in metering infrastructure, computing power, and industry-vetted algorithms are enabling new possibilities. Energy efficiency savings are now measurable on a monthly to near-real-time basis and leading states and utilities are taking meter-based energy efficiency into the field to improve existing programs and support innovative pay for performance program designs. Learn about the basics of the open-source CalTRACK methods and the “OpenEEMeter” codebase, how Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) is using energy efficiency procurement to achieve and validate energy savings, and how Energy Trust of Oregon is getting contractors used to new approaches for verifying the quality of their work.
Moderator: Commissioner Kimberly O'Guinn, Arkansas
- Carmen Best, Director of Policy & Emerging Markets, Recurve
- Ben Brown, Expert Program Manager, Pacific Gas & Electric
- Mark Wyman, Senior Program Manager, Energy Trust of Oregon
Virtual Meeting Experiences - An Exchange May 29, 2020
On May 29, 2020, the National Association for Regulatory Utility Commissioners’ (NARUC) Center for Partnerships and Innovation (CPI) facilitated a peer exchange among utility commissions across the country on how they have adjusted to conducting commission activities virtually. Five quick-moving commissions (California, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Michigan, and Washington) shared insights on what kinds of transition approaches their commissions have used at this point; how they’ve operated from a logistical and tactical perspective; and what strategies they are using to ensure proceedings, workshops, and related activities are meaningful and continuing in the public interest.
Carbon Pricing in Utility Regulation, May 21, 2020
States around the country are pricing carbon emissions from electricity generation. How can a carbon price be incorporated into commission decisions from performance-based ratemaking to cost-benefit analyses? Learn from states and experts that are tackling the integration.
Moderator: Jackie Ashley, Senior Regulatory Analyst, British Columbia Utilities Commission
- Long Lam, Managing Consultant, Guidehouse (Formerly Navigant Consulting)
- David Littell, Senior Advisor, Regulatory Assistance Project
- Dr. Kevin Rennert, Fellow, Director of Social Cost of Carbon Initiative, Resources for the Future
Two and a half years after the devastation of Hurricane Maria, many things have changed in Puerto Rico’s energy sector. The U.S. Department of Energy, NARUC, and NRRI have been assisting the Puerto Rico Energy Bureau in their efforts on distribution system planning, resilience, and recovery. Speakers provided a progress update.
Moderator: Carl Pechman, Director, NRRI
- Ferdinand Ramos, Commissioner, Puerto Rico Energy Bureau
- Samir Succar, Director, Distributed Energy Resources, ICF
- Jennifer DeCesaro, U.S. Department of Energ
Increasing the capacity and performance of electric transmission is key to achieving state goals, from increased resilience to integrating renewables. On this webinar, experts discussed improvements in advanced transmission technologies and regulatory options for deploying these solutions.
Moderator: Chairman Sally Talberg, Michigan Public Service Commission
- Jennie Chen, Senior Counsel, Federal Energy Policy, Duke University Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions
- Bruce Tsuchida, Principal, The Brattle Group
- Kerinia Cusick, Co-Founder, Center for Renewables Integration
- Jon Wellinghoff, CEO, GridPolicy Inc., and former Chairman, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
Last year, NARUC’s Center for Partnerships and Innovation and the National Council on Electricity Policy released a Mini-Guide on State Agency Coordination During Energy-Related Emergencies. This webinar provided an overview of that document and highlighted key takeaways. Webinar participants learned more about:
- How state energy offices, public utility commissions, and state emergency management agencies coordinate prior to and during energy emergencies: What works well? What doesn’t?
- What traits states with good energy emergency coordination possess.
Panelists discussed their experiences coordinating with their state partners during energy emergencies and relayed the methods they use for improving state preparedness.
Moderator: Commissioner Jay Balasbas, Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission
- Megan Levy, Local Energy Programs Manager and Energy Assurance Coordinator at the Wisconsin Office of Energy Innovation
- Lisa Gorsuch, Emergency Preparedness Manager, Oregon Public Utility Commission
- Patrick Cox, Deputy Director, Operations Division at the Virginia Department of Emergency Management
How can utilities help large customers achieve their own renewable energy goals as they approach very high penetrations of renewables? Panelists provided multiple perspectives that highlight differing views on the future of electric utility regulation in this context as states seek to achieve a reliable, affordable, and flexible power system.
Moderator: Julie Baldwin, Manager, Renewable Energy Section, Michigan Public Service Commission
- Jeff Lyng, Director of Market Development and Regulatory Affairs, Xcel Energy
- Daniel King, Team Lead - Product Strategy and Development, Xcel Energy
- Stephen Chriss, Director, Energy and Strategy Analysis, Walmart Stores, Inc.
- Lori Bird, U.S. Energy Program Director, World Resources Institute
- Lisa Schwartz, Deputy Leader, Electricity Markets and Policy Group, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
How do research institutions (National Labs, utilities, universities, entrepreneurs) connect with regulators? Panelists reviewed the nexus between R&D and utility regulation, and shared some exciting programs to lift innovation off the ground.
Moderator: Commissioner Sarah Freeman, Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission
- Janet Besser, Managing Director of Regulatory Innovation & Utility Business Models, Smart Electric Power Alliance
- Cyril Yee, Principle, RMI Ventures
- Paul Loeffelman, Director of Environmental Public Policy, American Electric Power
Attendees heard about new analysis showing that energy efficiency can be a cost-effective option for meeting peak power needs, and how utilities are using their EE programs to reduce peak across the grid. Historically, quantification of the costs and benefits of electricity efficiency programs have focused largely on the economic value of annual energy reductions. With increasing need for a more flexible and resilient electricity system, and changing costs for generation, utilities must take into account all characteristics of efficiency programs — including peak demand reduction — to ensure a reliable system at the most affordable cost.
Moderator: Wally Nixon, Arkansas Public Service Commission
- Natalie Mims Frick, Energy Efficiency Program Manager, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL)
- Rachel Gold, Senior Manager, Utilities Program, American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy (ACEEE)
- Angela Long, Planning Manager, Customer Solutions, PacifiCorp
Funds from the Volkswagen Settlement present an excellent one-time opportunity for states to shore up their electric vehicle charging infrastructure—if they can navigate the required interagency coordination.
Moderator: Commissioner Maria Bocanegra, Illinois Commerce Commission
- Nick Nigro, Founder, Atlas Public Policy
- Hanna Terwilliger, Economic Analyst, Minnesota Public Utilities Commission
- Dan Weekley, Vice President of Energy Innovation Policy & Implementation, Dominion Energy
Wildfires, hurricanes, flooding, and other natural disasters are growing more frequent and severe. These events have the potential to cause widespread, prolonged outages. On this webinar, speakers shared strategies on collaboration between the federal government, state public utility commissions, utilities, and other stakeholders to ensure that energy infrastructure, particularly the electricity distribution system, is resilient to these growing threats. The discussion offered perspectives on the following questions:
- How are utilities hardening distribution infrastructure to deal with extreme weather?
- What does resilience mean to energy regulators, and how is it measured?
- What tools are available to understand the costs and benefits of storm hardening and resilience investments?
Moderator: Commissioner Tim Echols, Georgia Public Service Commission
- Craig Zamuda, Senior Policy Advisor, U.S. Department of Energy
- Pete Larsen, Deputy, Electricity Markets & Policy Group, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab
- Brian D'Agostino, Director of Fire Science & Climate Adaptation, and Katie Giannecchini, Meteorologist, San Diego Gas & Electric
Across the electric power industry, a diverse stakeholder community applies a variety of methodologies to assess the value of different actions. These options range from investments in generation, transmission, or distribution assets to compensation mechanisms for distributed technologies. The resulting value assessments often vary widely for the same or similar types of projects. In response to this phenomenon, the Valuation Framework Guidelines document offers a framework that provides guidance to those who seek or rely on valuation studies for:
- Implementation of clear, transparent, and repeatable valuation processes; and
- Practices that can generate results that are easier for decision makers and the broader stakeholder community to understand, interpret, and compare.
The Valuation Framework Guidelines document is an output of the US Department of Energy’s (DOE) Grid Modernization Laboratory Consortium project, “Grid Services and Technologies Valuation Framework Development”. A team of national laboratory personnel have organized its development through a review of existing valuations and standards, experience with valuation exercises, and discussions with a stakeholder advisory group (SAG) comprised of industry, regulators, and other organizations.
Valuation Framework documents:
Cybersecurity threats to infrastructure are growing and consequences could be devastating. This webinar highlighted key cybersecurity principles and how electric and gas utilities implement them to enhance resilience.
Energy efficiency (EE) programs have reduced electricity consumption and saved ratepayers money for decades. With new technologies entering the market, how are states changing the way they look at EE programs? This moderated discussion provided an overview of state efforts to enhance EE programs to deliver environmental, economic, and social benefits by expanding the definition of energy efficiency, directing strategic utility investments, and improving cost-benefit analyses of a wide range of EE solutions. Panelists discussed recent legislation and regulatory developments in Massachusetts that can serve as learning opportunities for other states as well as a broader view of other efforts to grow the EE toolkit.
Moderator: Commissioner Ann Rendahl, Washington Utilities & Transportation Commission
- Maggie McCarey, Energy Efficiency Division Director, Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources
- Todd Olinsky-Paul, Project Director, Clean Energy Group
- Pat Stanton, Director of Policy, E4TheFuture
Stakeholders are a key party for all Commissions though stakeholder engagement techniques vary from state to state. On this webinar, we took a closer look at a recent, robust stakeholder process in the District of Columbia, called "Modernizing the Energy Delivery System for Increased Sustainability" (MEDSIS).
Moderator: Wally Nixon, Commission Legal Advisor, Arkansas Public Service Commission
- Naza Shelley, Attorney Advisor, DC Public Service Commission
- Susan Mora, Director of Utility Innovation, Exelon/Pepco
- Sharon Allan, Chief Innovation Officer, Smart Electric Power Alliance
This webinar explored what regulators can learn from past efforts to use performance incentive mechanisms (PIMs) to enhance utility regulation. PIMs are one regulatory, outcome-based, revenue recovery augmentation tool that provides a financial incentive for the utility to meet performance goals. Traditionally, PIMs have been used to drive improvements in specific public policy goals such as energy efficiency, service quality, and, at times, demand response and customer service. Lately, states are looking to apply PIMs to broader public policy goals and increased utility performance overall.
Moderator: Commissioner Marion Gold, Rhode Island Public Utility Commission
- Commissioner Abigail Anthony, Rhode Island Public Utility Commission
- Peter Cappers, Lawrence Berkeley National Lab
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) shared updates on state approaches to distribution system planning, grid modernization, and integrated resource planning. Topics included analyses of the accuracy of past integrated resource planning (IRP) load forecasts and utility procurement.
Moderator: Commissioner M. Beth Trombold, Public Utilities Commission of Ohio
- Juan Pablo Carvallo, Sr. Scientific Engineering Associate, LBNL
- Lisa Schwartz, Deputy Leader/Energy Efficiency Team Lead, LBNL
- Natalie Mims Frick, Energy Efficiency Program Manager, LBNL
While there is clear evidence that energy demands by the water sector are rapidly evolving, there has been no comprehensive effort to project these changes into the future. To fill this gap, energy to provide water services was mapped at the regional, state and county level for the contiguous U.S. This study estimated electricity use in 2012 and project to 2032 for large-scale conveyance, agricultural pumping, drinking water, and wastewater services. These projections are important for forecasting future energy loads posed by the water sector and for identifying regions where rapid change is possible.
- Moderated by Vice-Chairman Jack Betkoski, III, Connecticut Public Utilities Regulatory Authority
- Presenters: Vincent Tidwell, Sandia National Laboratories
- Guest Panelists: Katie Couglin, LBL; Peter Keegan, American Water
This webcast was part of a four-part series on the water-thermoelectric energy nexus in partnership with Sandia National Laboratories.
Performance of 1,080 thermoelectric plants across the contiguous US under future climates (2035–2064) was evaluated. Joint consideration of engineering interactions with climate, hydrology and environmental regulations reveals the region-specific performance of these energy systems. Despite climate–water constraints on individual plants, the current power supply infrastructure shows potential for adaptation to future climates by capitalizing on the size of regional power systems, grid configuration and improvements in thermal efficiencies.
- Moderated by Commissioner Mary-Anna Holden, New Jersey Board of Public Utilities
- Presenters: Ariel Miara, City University of New York; Jordan Macknick, National Renewable Energy Laboratory
- Guest Panelists: Emily Gruber, Georgia Tech
This webcast was part of a four-part series on the water-thermoelectric energy nexus in partnership with Sandia National Laboratories.
Consideration of water supply in transmission expansion planning (TEP) provides a valuable means of managing impacts of thermoelectric generation on limited water resources. Toward this opportunity, thermoelectric water intensity factors and water supply availability (fresh and non-fresh sources) were incorporated into a recent TEP exercise conducted for the electric interconnection in the Western United States. The goal was to inform the placement of new thermoelectric generation so as to minimize issues related to water availability. Conduct of this exercise highlighted the importance of integrating water into all phases of TEP, particularly joint management of decisions that are both directly (e.g., water availability constraint) and indirectly (technology or policy constraints) related to future thermoelectric water demand, as well as, the careful selection of scenarios that adequately bound the potential dimensions of water impact.
- Moderated by Chair Nancy Lange, Minnesota Public Utilities Commission
- Presenters: Vincent Tidwell, Sandia National Laboratories
- Guest Panelists: Carl Zichella, NRDC; and Michael Bailey, WIEB
This webcast was part of a four-part series on the water-thermoelectric energy nexus in partnership with Sandia National Laboratories.
Estimates of operational water withdrawal and water consumption factors (i.e., gal/MWh) for electricity generating technologies in the United States were developed. Estimates were collected from published primary literature and were not modified except for unit conversions. Estimates were distinguished by fuel type, prime mover, cooling type, emissions controls, and location. More recently, power plant operations have been shown to impact water use through the idling and cycling of power generation.
- Moderated by Commissioner John Rosales, Illinois Commerce Commission
- Presenters: Jordan Macknick, National Renewable Energy Laboratory: and Vincent Tidwell, Sandia National Laboratories
- Guest Panelist: Robert Lotts, Director, Palo Verde Water Resources, Arizona Public Service