January 26, 2010 IREC Webinar: Connecting to the Grid Guide

The IREC Webinar on Tuesday, January 26, at 2pm EST (1pm CST, noon MST, 11am PST, 10am Alaska, 9am Hawaii) was on the IREC Connecting to the Grid Guide.

Net metering and interconnection policies are essential pieces of a supportive modern state-level regulatory policy framework addressing two important aspects of renewable energy development: whether a customer investing in renewable generation can unlock the full value of his or her investment; and how that customer will interconnect his or her generation system to the distribution grid.

This seminar provided participants with a better understanding of the key issues in these policies and the process behind rulemaking proceedings at state utilities commissions.  Participants got an understanding of the prevailing trends in net metering and interconnection policy and how IREC approaches its work in advocating best practices.  States which are considering the revision of 1st or 2nd generation rules will benefit from the presentation of recent engineering-based analysis of the previously made “cross-subsidy” claims, along with evidence on the expansion of unreasonably low aggregate limitations.

This webinar also hit the highlights of IREC’s recently released Connecting to the Grid Guide, 6th edition.  The Connecting to the Grid Guide is an important tool that is designed for state regulators and other policymakers, utilities, industry representatives and consumers interested in the development of state-level interconnection standards.

View the webinar:

Connecting to the Grid Guide from Jane Pulaski on Vimeo.

The webinar featured presentations from these four experts:

Gary Nakarado is a former member of the Colorado Public Utilities Commission, currently active nation-wide as an expert witness in the areas of the improvement of obsolete rate structures, sustainable energy regulatory policy and the need for careful planning in state authorized smart grid implementation. He is the Managing Director of Regulatory Logic LLC, with current and past engagements with the US Department of Energy, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, FERC, Ohio Office of Consumer Counsel, US AID, Gridpoint, Inc., and the Galvin Commission.  He served on the IEEE section 1547 Working Group, and was the technical monitor on the US DOE publication, Making Connections.  Nakarado has spoken widely on issues presented to the regulatory environment when facing technological change that is in the public interest, but may threaten powerful legacy interests.  He holds an Economics-Special Honors degree from the University of Chicago, and a JD from the University of Michigan Law School.

Gary’s presentation:  Connecting to the Grid Guide for IREC’s January 26, 2010 webinar

Jason Keyes co-founded Keyes & Fox, LLP in 2008.  Primarily, he represents the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. in state utility commission rulemakings related to net metering and interconnection of renewable energy systems.  His background includes regulatory work related to renewable energy project development and finance, eight years of government contract management for a solar energy start-up, and integrated resource planning for a major electric utility.  Jason holds a JD from Seattle University School of Law, an M.A. in Economics from the University of Washington and a B.A. from Dartmouth College.

Jason’s presentation:  Implementing Connecting to the Grid Through State Rulemakings

Laurel Varnado is a policy analyst for the Clean Energy Applications program at the Solar Center. Focusing on net metering and interconnection issues, Laurel currently publishes the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc.’s monthly Connecting to the Grid newsletter. Previously, Laurel worked as a policy analyst for the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE) project and spent three years in West Africa where she worked to promote environmental and business management concepts in National Parks across Senegal. She holds a MA in Sustainable Development from the School for International Training and a BA in International Studies from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Laurel is also a Southeast Regional Network fellow for the 2009 Environmental Leadership Program.

Laurel’s presentation:  Connecting to the Grid Guide, 6th Edition

Michael T. Sheehan, P.E., is an Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. (IREC) representative working on state level rulemaking and workshops. In addition, he is the V.P. Utility Development for MicroPlanet, Inc. MicroPlanet is an energy efficiency company that sells electronic voltage regulators for both domestic and international utilities. He has extensive electric utility industry experience, in particular in interconnections, distribution reliability, T&D Planning, efficiency, and optimization measures. He has worked for three utilities (Commonwealth Edison, Virginia Power and Puget Sound Energy). He was a member of the IEEE 1547 Standard for Interconnecting Distributed Resources with Electric Power Systems. At Puget Sound Energy he developed the System Operator training program and designed the qualifications test and certification procedures. He is a registered Professional Engineer in the state of Washington and a graduate of the Illinois Institute of Technology.

Michael’s presentation:  Connecting to the Grid Guide, 6th Edition

There were two resources mentioned in this webinar:

Renewable System Interconnection (RSI) Studies.  This study identifies the technical and analytical challenges that must be addressed to enable high penetration levels of distributed renewable energy technologies.  The one titled Photovoltaics Value Analysis looks at the various components of valuing PV.

Richard Perez, University of Albany: Papers on PV Load Matching and Economic Evaluation


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