Utility Dive Viewpoint written by Anne Hoskins, Chief Policy Officer for Sunrun and former Commissioner on the Maryland Public Service Commission
As the dust settles from this year’s Presidential election, one thing is clear: nationwide demand for rooftop solar is vibrant. Rooftop solar has always enjoyed strong bipartisan support, with recent polling showing that 85% of voters support rooftop solar . . . Distributed solar is a building block for the grid of the future. Solar fuels demand response, smart inverters, and electric vehicles. “Solar plus storage” will unlock an even greater amount of grid support services, like frequency response, load shifting, peak reduction, reliability-based demand response, and voltage support and dispatch, so long as regulators encourage customers to be part of the solution. Read more.
Image Credit: SDG&E
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California county files community choice aggregation plan, Utility Dive More communities are turning to aggregation programs as a way to take charge of their energy supply, paying the local utility a fee to deliver their preferred power mix at customer rates they determine. And it is not just smaller communities—cities like San Diego are also tackling energy supply programs as a way to source their power from more renewable energy.
Microsoft announces largest wind energy purchase to date, PR Newswire On Monday, Microsoft Corp. announced its largest purchase of wind energy to date with the signing of two agreements. Combined, these agreements represent 237 megawatts of wind energy, which brings Microsoft’s total investment in wind energy projects in the U.S. to more than 500 megawatts.
The Tesla-SolarCity proposed merger is really just the tip of the energy cloud: “This emerging energy cloud landscape, a concept that borrows from cloud computing, represents a range of technical, commercial, environmental, and regulatory changes that challenge the traditional hub-and-spoke grid architecture.” [Elon Musk]. Click to read more.
In an upcoming webinar titled The Integrated DER Ecosystem, Navigant Research and two industry leaders, SolarCity and Generate Capital, will discuss how these bundling trends, in addition to other advances in the DER landscape, present opportunities and challenges in the market. The transition to the energy cloud is a bumpy path, but it is already redefining the grid architecture and customer relationships of the future.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk revealed “part deux” of his master plan for the company in a Wednesday blog post, outlining a vision to expand Tesla’s vehicle offerings and network them with rooftop solar and residential batteries . . . The acquisition of Tesla’s sister company SolarCity will allow Tesla to “create a smoothly integrated and beautiful solar-roof-with-battery product that just works,” Musk wrote, “empowering the individual as their own utility.” Read more here.