The Environmental Protection Agency wants to make a great leap forward towards resolving significant industry troubles. A few of these troubles may include a decrease in power demand or even the boom in renewable, off-the-grid energy installations and distributed power systems. Utilities are being affected the most and with the following tips you will have an industry that is able to successfully maximize opportunities while taking the risk factors into consideration. These tips include financial reconstruction, new regulations, distributed generation, and evolving customer interface.
1. Financial Reconstruction
Distribution and generation are splitting apart due to the high cost of generating electricity with old methods, which are no longer making a profit because the demand for old methods is decreasing. Generation will mainly be focused on a new source of power in the area of renewable energy such as hydroelectric, solar, wind, etc. The demand for these forms of energy is high, which is making them feasible and efficient. For this reason power plants that do not use these new methods will be separating their portfolios because while the generation of their electricity is no longer profitable, the distribution sources and methods can be connected. This will keep the businesses profiting by using their distribution alongside the new energy sources, while using a minimal amount of the fossil fuel and older methods of producing electricity.
2. New Regulations
The EPA has a plan called the Clean Power Plan which includes ambitious CO2 reduction targets for each state, designed to achieve a 30 percent nationwide decrease in CO2 emissions over 2005 levels by the year 2030.
- One of the effects that the CPP will have on utilities will speed up the departure of coal-fueled power plants. An estimated additional 19 gigawatts’ worth of capacity in coal plants will be suspended in the coming year.
- Increasing the use of existing and new natural gas combined cycle plants will heighten the industry’s susceptibility to instability in natural gas prices.
- The EPA suggests that between 11 and 22 gigawatts’ worth of capacity in nuclear units will undergo an early departure over the next 10 years. Also, the remaining nuclear facilities are expected be shut down by 2050, and only a certain amount of new units are anticipated to come on line.
Provided the uncertainty over the precise timing and implementation of the regulation, it is strongly recommended that companies should take an if–then scenario-driven tactic to determine how they respond.
3. Distributed Generation
Areas of localized power generation for instance the Northeast have rapid growth in primarily solar photovoltaic panels at customer sites. In general power supplied locally is often cheaper than power supply through the traditional electric grid. Utilities have become more and more concerned about this transition, provided that even relatively low rates of penetration of customer-sited generation can affect company earnings immensely. This effort has the ability to make utilities operate as distribution system operators. It is all about the way the utilities respond to distributed generation and it is different for different situations. Factors may include the speed at which the markets move and the regulatory environment that they are active in.
4. Evolving Customer Interface
Different products such as the smart grid are providing customers superior control over the time and quantity of the energy being used. These products are not for industry level only; they may be used by homeowners, internet firms, cable operators, or even solar companies. Utility companies have the opportunity to advance if they manage it appropriately. Key things to focus on would be to better understand the customers’ demands for countless access to info, control over their usage, and self-service. Over the last couple of years, utilities underperformed the market notwithstanding their advantages in low-interest environments. Utilities must strive in an environment that the demand for power is dwindling, therefore the opportunities must be provided for this expansion.
Panel Shops and Integration
Overall, the EPA’S new standards will resolve significant industry problems. Integrating control panel solutions into your environmental strategy can pay off in the big picture. PanelShop.com has experience in providing custom panels for energy monitoring systems for utility tracking and efficiency. Whatever your unique application or energy needs, PanelShop.com can help design and implement high quality electrical control panels to industry regulations, NEMA or IP ratings, and other leading standards.