ScottMadden, Inc., one of North America’s leading energy consulting firms, recently joined top experts as a sponsor and presenter at the 2nd Annual Infocast NY Energy REVolution Summit in New York. The Summit took place following the filing of NY utility Distributed Systems Implementation Plans (DSIP) in June and filing of the joint supplemental DSIP in November. This event provided a unique opportunity to hear how utilities are planning for the future and exploring the promise vs. the practical development reality of microgrids, renewable energy, and emerging opportunities for third-party providers.
At this event, Cristin Lyons, partner and grid transformation practice leader at ScottMadden, led two panels: the first focused on the role of utilities in Reforming the Energy Vision (REV), and the second examined the elements of REV that can or may be replicated.
The initial session reviewed the role of utilities, how they will specify the tools, process, and protocols they are implementing to dynamically manage a Distributed Energy Resource (DER), and how they plan to efficiently manage resources and support retail markets that facilitate DER investment. Panelists included Joe Hally of Central Hudson; Doug McMahon of New York Power Authority (NYPA); Navneet Trivedi of Vrinda Inc.; and Candice Tsay of Con Edison. The panel largely agreed with Ms. Tsay’s statement that, “When we, as utilities, think about the change that is happening it is a systemic change. We will play a big role on how this change plays out.” The liveliest discussion took place around which categories of utility spending are eligible for deferral by implementing DER, where DER providers are pushing for more than what the utilities indicated was available in their DSIP filings.
The second session discussed the elements of REV that may be replicated across different states. Panelists included John Flory of The Alliance Risk Group; Peter Rothstein of Northeast Clean Energy Council; Forrest Small of Bridge Energy Group; and Marisa Uchin of OPOWER. The broad consensus was that, while it’s hard to prove a counter-factual, elements of advancing technology, greater DER penetration driven by reduced costs, and greater grid modernization are universal and will continue. These trends will likely advance the REV goals of a resilient, reliable, clean, and affordable delivery of electricity, even in the absence of specific REV policies. As Mr. Rothstein put it, we need to “embrace a common vision versus an incremental process.” For NY REV, the policy vision is preceding technology, though in other areas of the country, technology may precede policy. Both models will drive adoption and a modernized grid.
“The panels, and conference on the whole, brought to the forefront how different stakeholders are wrestling with the issues of REV and making no-regrets progress toward modernizing the grid,” said Ms. Lyons.
About ScottMadden’s Grid Transformation Practice
For more than 30 years, ScottMadden has helped our clients transform the way they operate, plan, and maintain the grid and interact with their customers. The Grid Transformation practice focuses on helping clients adapt to the myriad changes driven by the increasing penetration of distributed energy resources, such as distributed generation, storage, demand response, and microgrids. We help our clients choose the path that meets their reliability, customer, and regulatory goals, and then we help them implement it.
About ScottMadden, Inc.
ScottMadden is the management consulting firm that does what it takes to get it done right. Our practice areas include Energy, Clean Tech & Sustainability, Corporate & Shared Services, and Grid Transformation. We deliver a broad array of consulting services ranging from strategic planning through implementation across many industries, business units, and functions. To learn more, visit www.scottmadden.com | Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn