Utility Dive: The Top 5 States for Utility Grid Modernization and Business Model Reform

April 3, 2017 | Media

From Utility Dive

As utilities face the rise of distributed resources and face stagnant load growth, a number of states are looking to alter the traditional sector business model through regulatory dockets…

…Minnesota, not a state known for its high solar penetration, found itself entangled in a familiar policy battle over net metering compensation rates three years ago.

As lawmakers sought to resolve this familiar conundrum, a group of stakeholders embarked on a collaboration effort to reform the utility business model in preparation for a changing energy landscape. While many of these reforms are taking place in deregulated states, Minnesota marks the first time a vertically-integrated market entered the grid modernization challenge.

In contrast to deregulated states, tackling grid reforms in vertically integrated markets— where the utilities own the transmission, distribution and generation systems—is an even harder challenge.

Divided into three phases, the first part of the e21 initiative drafted a blueprint for regulating utilities. The first phase report was released at the end of 2015. And the stakeholders just released the report from the second phase, which concluded at the end of 2016.

In that report, stakeholders crafted a series of white papers on integrated system planning, grid modernization and performance-based regulation. The third phase will focus on regulatory and business model implementations, but details have been sketchy beyond that description…

Read the full article at Utility Dive