Successful NCEP Annual Meeting and Workshop Held
As investments in new energy-related technologies, products, and activities are underway—many of which impact planning, operations, and markets along both the transmission and distribution parts of the grid—state policy-makers and others are being called upon to make decisions that will affect customer services and utility grid modernization efforts. Increasingly, energy decision makers at local, state, and regional levels are foreseeing that their decisions will impact how the grid operates at customer locations, across the distribution system, and into the transmission system. The intersection points of these stakeholders and systems are not fully understood, as technologies and processes are evolving all the time.
NCEP’s successful annual meeting and workshop explored this evolution and specifically the impact that distributed energy resources (DERs) are and will have on the transmission and distribution systems in the contexts of planning, operations, and markets. Such DERs as energy efficiency, distributed generation (e.g., solar photovoltaics), energy storage, demand response, electric vehicles, and more, illustrated current examples of technologies and decisions that are underway.
State policies and programs, data and information, and questions and research that still need to be addressed were gleaned from speakers and participants, with the end goal of helping state decision-makers learn from each other. This learning process was designed to help them make more informed policy decisions and avoid pitfalls that others have identified.
Topics that were addressed included:
- Transmission planning that incorporates non-wires solutions
- Distribution-level grid services that also support the transmission and bulk power system
- Valuating the grid: how benefits are allocated and how services are measured
- Support for, and recognition of, customer needs and expectations
- Reliability and resiliency on the transmission and distribution systems
NCEP members in attendance included directors and staff of public utility regulatory agencies, environmental and air regulatory agencies, consumer advocate offices, state legislative bodies, state energy offices, and gubernatorial energy offices. The varied audience reflected NCEP’s membership, whose numbers represent the only national energy trade association that includes policy directors and staff who all touch electricity policy across the U.S.
The agenda focused on state examples of intersections across the planning process, operations, and market evolution of the electricity industry. Access the May 8 presentations here and the May 9 presentations here.
NCEP will use the results of the Annual Meeting and Workshop to write a “State of the State” White Paper on the intersections of the transmission and distribution grids, as the number and variety of distributed energy resources (DERs) grow at the state, regional, and national levels. The White Paper is expected to be released in fall 2018.
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