national council on electricity policy

2019 NCEP Annual Meeting on Evolving Transmission, Distribution, and Customer System Coordination

At the 2018 Annual Meeting and Workshop in Denver, CO, the National Council on Electricity Policy (NCEP) gathered state decision makers and stakeholders to discuss the state of interfaces between distribution and transmission systems in light of increasing distributed energy resources. NCEP explored this evolution and specifically the impact that DERs are and will have on the transmission and distribution systems in the contexts of planning, operations, and markets. Such DERs include energy efficiency, distributed generation (e.g., solar photovoltaics), energy storage, demand response, electric vehicles, and more. 

In 2019, NCEP further explored the topic of interfaces between the distribution and transmission systems by focusing on transmission, distribution, and customer (TDC) system interfaces, taking a closer look at operational needs and their influence on planning and markets. 

Workshop Objectives:

  • Discuss experiences coordinating planning, operations, and markets of TDC electricity systems
  • Examine ideas around the operational needs of a coordinated system and how states play a role in developing a future-proofed system
  • Participate in an ongoing conversation among decision makers and experts about the evolving intersections and coordination needs of the grid
  • Hear insights and lessons learned from experts, state regulators, energy directors, utility managers, technologists, legislators, consumer advocates, and stakeholders

Workshop Materials:

Session descriptions and links to presentations follow.


Inaugural Jan Brinch Award for Collaboration in Public Service – Day 1, Wednesday, September 11, 2019

NCEP initiated a new award in memory of Jeannette “Jan” Brinch, who passed away in 2018 and energetically facilitated the National Council on Electricity Policy (NCEP) from 2014 – 2018. Jan’s career was marked by progress on energy and environmental issues from a wide range of public service positions. One of the hallmarks of her success in each of these roles was her desire to collaborate with others with diverse perspectives, positions, and organizations. This award honors other public servants who similarly view their positions as opportunities to bring people together to accomplish public interest goals in the electricity sector.

Cheryl LaFleur is the inaugural award recipient. Read more in the press release.

Keynote & Welcome to Texas – Day 1, Wednesday, September 11, 2019

  • Featuring Dub Taylor, Texas State Energy Conservation Office Director
  • Introduced by Hon. Paul Kjellander, President of NCEP and President of the Idaho PUC

Physical System & Operating Essentials – Day 1, Wednesday, September 11, 2019

In this session, attendees learned fundamentals of grid architecture, why they are important to understand, and what parts of the transmission, distribution, and customer systems need most attention and coordination.

Moderator: Hon. Nick Wagner, Iowa

Panelists: 

  • Paul De Martini, Newport Consulting Group
  • Jeff Taft, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Coordination Principles – Day 1, Wednesday, September 11, 2019

In this session, attendees gained an understanding of coordination principles and how to apply them including a framework, approaches, and consideration of roles and responsibilities. 

Moderator: Hon. Ted Thomas, Arkansas

Panelists:

  • Paul De Martini, Newport Consulting Group
  • Jeff Taft, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

State Examples: Advancing Transmission, Distribution, and Customer System Coordination – Day 1, Wednesday, September 11, 2019

In this session, attendees heard multiple perspectives on case studies from states that have been working to clarify objectives of coordination and work through coordination principles. 

Moderator: Hon. ToNola Brown-Bland, North Carolina

Panelists:

  • Mark Oliver, Duke Energy 
  • Constance McDaniel Wyman, Texas PUC

Communications Across the Grid – Day 2, Thursday, September 12, 2019

This session discussed communications network needs and options to enhance coordination between customer (grid edge) devices, distribution system operators, and independent system operators.

Moderator: Chris Villarreal, Plugged In Strategies (for discussion)

Panelists: 

  • Paul Duncan, MPR Associates
  • Paul Alvarez, WiredGroup
  • Mark Knight, Burns & McDonnell
  • Lorenzo Kristov, Independent Consultant

State Examples of Communication Network Coordination – Day 2, Thursday, September 12, 2019

In this session, attendees heard multiple perspectives on two case studies from states that have been working to tackle communications network coordination challenges.

Moderator: Michael Dowd, Virginia Department of Environmental Quality

Panelists: 

  • Ted Ko, Stem
  • Tricia DeBleeckere, Minnesota PUC
  • Marcus Hawkins, Organization of MISO States
  • Jason Allnutt, IEEE

Site Visit: Pecan Street – Day 2, Thursday, September 12, 2019

Pecan Street is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization that addresses technology, behavior, and how the two interact with energy, water, and transportation systems. With over 1,100 residential volunteers and state-of-the-art technology, Pecan Street has recently developed capabilities to access one-second, appliance-level home energy data, and can bring a fleet of residential storage online in 8 seconds. On the site visit, NCEP members spoke with engineers on-the-ground about what it means to have an efficient, information-driven electricity system. Visit www.PecanStreet.org for more information.