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ScottMadden Energy Industry Update Revisits the Deepening Duck Curve in California

May 31, 2017

ScottMadden, Inc., one of North America’s leading energy consulting firms, recently released its semi-annual Energy Industry Update. Themed “It’s the End of the World as We Know It (And I Feel Fine),” this report focuses on the strategic drivers propelling our industry. One such issue is the California “duck curve”—a real and growing phenomenon.

ScottMadden previously performed original research employing five years of California Independent System Operator (CAISO) data to examine the duck curve and its drivers. Our research confirmed that the 2013 duck curve prediction made by CAISO is coming true, but revealed a surprise about its cause.

But when is the duck curve a cause for concern? The Energy Industry Update examines the inter-relationship among minimum load, installed solar, and the amount of baseload capacity to explain why small amounts of solar can produce meaningful impacts.

“While the duck curve is a relatively new phenomenon and could start to emerge in places other than California, the challenges it could pose are by no means insurmountable,” said Chris Vlahoplus, partner and clean tech & sustainability practice leader at ScottMadden. “But it may require a shift in thinking to focus on the potential solutions inherent in utility-scale facilities.”

Click here to better understand the root cause and comprehensive impact of the duck curve—its existence, impact, and migration potential.

If you were unable to join our Energy Industry Update webcast, the final recording is now available. Hear what our industry experts have to say about solar curtailment, Australia’s response to distributed generation, and smart cities in this new session.

About ScottMadden’s Energy Practice

We know energy from the ground up. Since 1983, we have been energy consultants. 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 have helped our clients develop strategies, improve operations, reorganize companies, and implement initiatives. Our broad and deep energy utility expertise is not theoretical—it is experience based.

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 | Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn


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Mary Tew


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