WASHINGTON, Dec. 14, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Institute for Electric Innovation (IEI) today released a new book, Thought Leaders Speak Out: Key Trends Driving Change in the Electric Power Industry, Volume III. The third and final book in the series features 20 essays by electric and technology company thought leaders that focus on the key trends driving the transformation underway in the electric power industry.
According to the book's editor and IEI Executive Director Lisa Wood, "The electric power industry is innovating like never before, keeping pace with evolving technologies and customer expectations. This new book explores three critical mega-trends that offer the most promise for our energy future: rate and regulatory reform, data analytics, and energy grid modernization. These issues are critical to ensuring that our industry continues to provide an affordable, reliable, and increasingly clean energy future, and deliver the benefits of innovation and new technologies for all customers and communities nationwide."
Rate and Regulatory Reform: Today's regulatory process is often slow and inflexible, presenting obstacles to innovation. Major players in the energy industry are encouraging urgent reform to enable innovation and modernization, while ensuring safe, affordable, reliable, and increasingly clean energy for customers. Regulators have many tools available, and, more and more, collaboration is proving a promising way forward.
Data Analytics: Advanced data analytics are enabling new operational capabilities, improved grid management, and new energy services that benefit customers. Smart grid technologies and predictive data analytics provide new digital tools to unlock a growing number of opportunities – today's early gains such as rapid outage detection and restoration and improved management of distributed energy resources are just the tip of the iceberg.
Grid Modernization: Now more than ever, the smart grid is the critical platform to integrate renewable and distributed energy resources, deliver information and communicate with customers, and greatly enhance reliability and resiliency. Together, electric and technology companies are investing in and deploying smarter energy infrastructure and are leveraging cloud-based intelligence to realize the full potential of a clean energy future.
Below are excerpts from several of the essays in the book:
"Fundamentally, the goal in all states should be long-term alignment of customer expectations, public policy goals, and regulatory processes. States across the country, working with electric companies, customers, and others, are mapping journeys to destinations of their own choosing, maintaining flexibility in the paths they take." –NorthWestern Energy President and CEO and IEI Co-Chair Bob Rowe
"The fact of the technology revolution in energy is a given; however, its impact on customers is subject to the shape and direction of policy design. Policy can speed or slow change—and determine whether advancements are piecemeal and uncoordinated, or planned and collaboratively designed to maximize benefits across the board. Cell phone technology was available in the late 1970s, but didn't become commercially available until spectrum policy was redesigned in the late 1980s. Similarly, in our energy revolution, smart energy infrastructure must be matched by smart policy. Technology leads, but policy rules." – Commonwealth Edison President and CEO Anne Pramaggiore and Senior Vice President for Customer Operations Val Jensen
"Electric companies have an important choice to make. They can stop service at the meter, or they can push forward to offer energy management, appliance control, and home automation solutions to enable customers to solve energy use problems and secure an avenue of future growth. While doing so, they can meet energy efficiency goals, optimize peak load utilization, better meet environmental mandates, improve their carbon footprint, and develop new revenue sources." – Powerley CEO Manoj Kumar
"Analytics have greatly improved our real-time situational awareness of grid conditions, including outages, giving controllers and dispatchers the ability to locate and isolate faults more quickly and to send the right crew to the right place for faster outage restoration. Since 2011, we used our Intelligent Grid in more than 1,800 outage events to save customers more than 188 million outage minutes. In 2016 alone, we improved reliability 33 percent. Since 2015, more than 660,000 customers have avoided sustained outages. Moreover, our advanced metering system's automated outage notification ability has allowed us to restore power to well more than 1.5 million customers without a single phone call." – CenterPoint Energy President and CEO Scott Prochazka
The book is available here.
The Institute for Electric Innovation focuses on advancing the adoption and application of new technologies and innovation that will strengthen and transform the energy grid. The Institute's members are the investor-owned electric companies that represent about 70 percent of the U.S. electric power industry, along with a select group of leading U.S. and international energy technology firms. The membership is committed to an affordable, reliable, secure, and clean energy future. For more information, please visit www.EdisonFoundation.net.
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SOURCE Edison Foundation