July 2014 Connecting to the Grid Newsletter



Note from the Editor

The New Mod Squad – Grid modernization for our shifting energy resources 

We’ve heard a lot about smart grid over the past decade, but to achieve a truly intelligent grid we need to do much more than switch out analog meters for their digital counterparts. We must also implement comprehensive new regulatory structures to make use of the data and functionality provided by these equipment upgrades.  In other words, we need to modernize the grid in addition to our modes of interacting with it.

Many topics can fall under the umbrella of grid modernization.  To name a few: data security, customer engagement, system reliability, distributed energy resources (DER), energy storage, rate design and infrastructure updates. It seems most states have taken on at least some of these challenges in a piecemeal fashion, depending on their immediate needs.

Several states have recently taken a far more comprehensive approach, however, embarking on grid modernization efforts and regulatory proceedings from a bird’s-eye view.  IREC has been involved in several of these efforts, relying on our deep technical and regulatory experience to weigh in on critical DER issues, which many progressive states are starting to confront. The following highlight some ways in which forward-leaning states are leading the modernization charge.

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State News in Detail

Northeastern States

Maine rate-case settlement avoids extra charges for net metering customers.  Read more.

Vermont’s Washington Electric Co-op resumes net metering. Read more.


Mid-Atlantic States 

A plan to boost low-income solar options in D.C.  Read more.


Midwestern States

Iowa Supreme Court rules in favor of third-party solar. Read more.

Michigan PSC report continues solar push for utilities.  Read more.

Nebraska’s Lincoln Electric System gets 78 proposals for community solar energy project. Read more.

Wisconsin co-op launches first-in-state community solar project.  Read more.


Southern States

South Carolina passes net metering law, initiates regulatory docket. Read more.


Western States  

California City of Palo Alto issues community solar RFP. Read more.

LADWP report suggests charging net metering customers more for grid access.  Read more.

Colorado Springs Utilities sells out Community Solar Garden before construction.  Read more.

Study: Costs of rooftop solar were not passed along to non-solar ratepayers in Nevada. Read more.

Austin Energy plans shared renewable solar array. Read more.

Utah PSC sets solar fee hearings.  Read more.


Other States 

Hawaiian Electric sees widespread interest in developing energy storage projects.  Read more.


Federal and Miscellaneous News

Regulators OK novel plan for ‘real time’ power sharing in the West. Read more.


View an archived version of the newsletter here:  July 2014 Connecting to the Grid Newsletter



While customer-sited net metering and interconnection policies are primarily addressed at the state level, they are also becoming important on a regional basis. This newsletter has been designed to provide state-level policy updates and capture emerging regional trends. Connecting to the Grid is a free, electronic newsletter published each month by the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. (IREC). Click here to subscribe. Editor: Laurel Passera.


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