Energy Industry Update – Volume 17, Issue 2

Generation to Generation: An Energy Evolution

Our energy industry is evolving. It is a time of surprising developments and new ideas. Themed “Generation to Generation: An Energy Evolution,” this Update examines the direction and magnitude of some of the changes and the forces in play.

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Highlights include:

View from the Executive Suite

What are the emerging themes and trends defining the energy industry?

Energy Supply, Demand, and Markets

What are the issues in competitive electric markets, and what can be done? How is the U.S. power generation mix changing, and what are its implications? With so much happening for both new and existing nuclear power plants, what is the outlook for that sector? Given still-prolific domestic natural gas production and export capacity development, what are prospects for increased liquefied natural gas exports?

Infrastructure and Technology

Why is Illinois the best-kept secret in grid modernization? How have state initiatives set the foundation for a modernized grid? What are the prospects for power transmission development, and how are needs changing in a renewable, distributed energy world?

Rate and Regulatory Issues

What is community choice aggregation, and why does it matter? What are the benefits and challenges that come with it? What are the implications for incumbent utilities?

Clean Tech and Environment

Everyone says a lot of solar can make it harder to manage the grid. What three things—the “solar trifecta”—could allow “smart solar” to actually help us manage the grid? What is happening with more traditional energy resources such as energy efficiency and pumped-storage hydropower?

ScottMadden’s EIU Webcast

Take a step back and consider what is happening, what it means, and where our industry is headed. Access our webcast recording to hear our industry experts share their views and field questions related to bid-based wholesale power markets, the future of utility-scale solar, and grid investment.

Since 1983, we have served more than 400 clients, including 20 of the top 20 energy utilities. We have performed more than 3,000 projects across every energy utility business unit and every function.

We hope you will find The ScottMadden Energy Industry Update to be a useful and informative resource. If you would like to discuss our observations in greater detail, have us present them to your executive team, or suggest a topic for future issues, please contact us. Learn more about our Energy Practice area.


View from the Executive Suite

Executive Summary

Change is in the air, and many of our industry challenges are being converted into opportunities by our clients. Energy industry technologies, business and operating models, and markets are evolving—or must evolve—to accommodate new types of energy resources making their way onto the grid. What are some of the big themes and trends? Read more


Energy Supply, Demand, and Markets

Competition at the Crossroads: Reconciling State Policies and Wholesale Power Markets

Trying to make the economic theory work: FERC seeks a price formation construct in competitive electric markets that provides the “right” price signals. Read more

Mixing It Up: Fuel Mix for Power Generation Continues to Shift

Markets and industry players adapt to shifting fuel mix, with long-term implications still to be seen. Read more

Nuclear Power: Living on the Edge

One major nuclear new build project has been abandoned, one forges ahead, and others are taking a cautious stance. Read more

Liquefied Natural Gas: Too Much of a Good Thing?

As U.S. liquefied natural gas (LNG) export capacity is set to grow, worldwide LNG trade heats up. Read more


Infrastructure and Technology

Preparing for the Future: Illinois Prepares for Distributed Energy Resources

Thanks to grid modernization efforts and proactive ratemaking, Illinois has laid the foundation for distributed energy resources. Read more

Grid Investment: Not the Same Old Wires

Even as distributed resources grow in interest and on the ground, continued transmission investment is needed. Read more


Rate and Regulatory Issues

Community Choice Aggregation

As communities use aggregation to secure renewable resources, implications for incumbent utilities and their customers are unclear. Read more


Clean Tech and Environment

The Solar Trifecta: A Path to Smart Utility-Scale Solar

Improvements in solar technology offer the promise of energy plus multiple grid services competitive with gas-fired generation. Read more

Energy Efficiency: Little by Little

States continue to target energy efficiency, and its potential remains high, fortified by technology improvements. Read more

Pumped Storage Hydropower: New Look for Old Tech?

A large installed base of energy storage may get a bit larger. Read more

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