There is anecdotal evidence of the need for collaboration. For proponents of local clean energy resources there is an even more basic question. Why energy resources that are both clean and local? The case is compelling.
Simply put, local¹ clean energy resources are happening, unevenly around the world, mostly, except for California, outside the US. They come in many sizes. So do utilities. So do cities. Maybe we need a common denominator if we are to connect dots more strategically and less anecdotally.
In an era of big data, the trade-off between local economic optimization and utility system-wide optimization can be readily informed by data-driven economic analysis. There is no motivation to do the analysis now because no adjustments are possible. But if local energy franchise agreements were mandated by the state to consider the possibility of city/utility collaboration on local economic and carbon footprint reduction goals, the parties would be motivated to engage.
In California, state regulators are starting to assert jurisdiction over Community Choice business planning, citing the need for consistency between the supply plans of all energy service providers. Does this solve a real, on-going problem?
(The following article is based on a presentation by Gerry Braun at the California CCA Forum in Los Angeles California on May 19, 2015)
Decentralized energy technologies will transform the electricity sector over the next couple decades. Community choice aggregators (CCAs) can be leading agents of the transformation to the extent they push for, and secure, the freedom to transform themselves. The extent to which they evolve to take a more and more integrative role may determine whether local clean energy resources are developed or held back.
States lacks the capacity to account for decisive and locally specific factors affecting on-site and community based energy supply. Meanwhile increasing numbers of local jurisdictions are aiming for sustainability and resiliency in their goals and plans. In order to follow through they must have policies and programs in place that are responsive to on-the-ground energy trends and opportunities in their communities.
When we use the term “renewable integration” to describe IRESN’s focus, what do we mean? Integration with what? In what context?
IRESN has been active in certain major dimensions of renewable integration. They are:
Without some examples, these terms don’t help much either. So, for example