Smart meters enable time-varying rates, but it's unclear how those rates will roll out in Massachusetts.

Massachusetts regulators see a future in which customers are leaving investor-owned utilities for municipal aggregators and competitive third-party suppliers, and they aren't sure how to fit mass-market smart meter deployments into that future. 

Last week, the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities (DPU) issued an order that “declined to preauthorize any customer-facing investments” — that is, smart meter deployments — in the long-running grid modernization plans of investor-owned utilities National Grid, Eversource and Unitil. 

The decision postpones the five-year advanced metering infrastructure spending plans of Eversource, which had proposed a $138 million program, Unitil, with a $1.3 million plan, and National Grid’s proposals

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Energy efficiency and new solar expected to drive down overall use and peak demand
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A combination of energy-efficiency measures and behind-the-meter solar will reduce both overall demand for grid electricity and peak demand over the next decade, a new report from the region's grid manager says.

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On the site of an old coal mine in Belgium's only national park, Centrica Business Solutions’ flexibility provider REstore has launched a 32-megawatt virtual power plant, with a distribution grid connected 18.2 megawatt Tesla Powerpack storage system.

The project took six months from inception to operation; the battery installation took about five weeks. The virtual power plant (VPP) has been providing primary frequency regulation to the Belgian transmission system operator since April 2018, and stacking value with additional participation in the real-time balancing market. 

Frequency regulation is traditionally provided by conventional generators. Here, the majority is being provided by battery flexibility. And it's the intelligence

Distribution automation: the backbone of a digital, distributed grid.

When dozens of utilities received stimulus funds for distribution automation projects in 2009, solar was barely a gigawatt-scale market in the U.S. Sandy was simply a lead character in Grease, not a superstorm that would prompt cities and states to reassess the future-readiness of their electricity systems.

Much has changed in America's power sector in the past decade. Powerful storms have made resiliency a focus for the industry. In the past two years alone, 25 gigawatts of solar have been installed. Renewable portfolio standards have intensified in many states, and are increasingly being backed up by regulatory innovation that encourages utilities to rethink their business models.

The need

VoltStorage is the latest company to try a residential flow battery.

A startup hopes to crack Germany’s residential energy storage market with a flow battery, despite problems for the technology elsewhere.

VoltStorage, of Olching, Bavaria, is commercializing Europe’s first redox flow battery for home use in a move that echoes Redflow’s brief excursion into the residential market in Australia.

The VoltStorage Series 100 battery, with 3.6 kilowatts and 6.8 kilowatt-hours of capacity, was being offered at a pre-order price of €5,999 (about USD $7,060). It is not clear if this price included installation costs and sales tax. 

For comparison, the 4.6-kilowatt, 13.5-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion Tesla Powerwall sells for €7,350 (USD $8,650) in Germany, including supporting

In a world where wind and solar resources make up 40 to 50 percent of generation, wholesale energy prices will drop by as much as $16 per megawatt-hour, according to a study released Wednesday from a group of researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

Modeling 2030 scenarios in which CAISO, NYISO, SPP and ERCOT reach combined wind and solar penetration at or above 40 percent, the researchers found electricity prices will fall — but price fluctuations may increase and the number of peak net-load hours will spread to a greater number of days.  

According to co-author Joachim Seel, the study offers a “holistic” analysis

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Qatar Green Leaders is a Green Building Certification Management & Training Company, dedicated to helping its clients achieve the most feasible LEED / GSAS certification.

We are a privately-owned Qatari company established in June 2011 and operating from Doha, Qatar.

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