The cost of solar and wind continue to fall while consumers demand more low carbon energy, driving U.S. electric utilities to broaden their portfolio of cleaner generation.
Mitesh Patel, Business Development Director & Associate Vice President, Renewable Energy, Asia, speaks to Uma Gupta of pv magazine about the key trends driving the solar market, especially in Southeast Asia, and strategies to improve the bankability of PV projects.
There is no denying the rise of distributed energy resources (DER) as policy makers, regulators, environmentalists and the public sector press for decarbonization, resiliency, energy independence and sustainability. As this distributed market grows at an accelerating pace, both behind and in front of the meter, the electric utility industry faces questions around what a distributed grid landscape will look like and the challenges it presents in terms of their role, business model, revenue, margins and asset management as the market develops and matures.
"How" is the big question facing the electric industry across Asia as we look ahead to 2021 and a world post-COVID-19.
Over the past 20 years, considerable progress has been made towards achieving universal, reliable and affordable access to electric power. Whether the region will enable the transition to less carbon-intensive energy sources — principally through a step-change in the amount of renewable energy generation on the grid — is a question that will challenge all parties in the months ahead.
The COVID-19 pandemic threw a wrench into the power utility sector’s cybersecurity planning, leaving North American electric utility leaders facing the challenge of securing the grid against the growing threat of cyberattacks while meeting profound changes in energy use.
The global energy landscape is changing rapidly, and the shift towards a smarter, more sustainable, reliable and resilient grid is occurring at an accelerating rate. Huge changes are needed in the nation’s power distribution infrastructure to deliver a modern network that is advanced enough to meet today’s rapidly changing expectations, yet flexible enough to one day enable a range of next-gen capabilities.
Illustrating how U.S. electric utilities are rethinking their power generation portfolio mixes, Florida Power & Light Co.’s corporate parent presented itself as a trailblazer in an evolving industry where once-dominant coal spirals out of favor, ceding to cleaner, greener options.
In a perfect world, one of the power industry’s great advantages should be the degree of certainty in its business activities. This is readily acknowledged on the regulated side of the business, where a rate case — win or lose — results in greater certainty, at least in the short-term, for both electric utilities and their customers. And even in unregulated parts of the business, fixed costs are relatively stable and customer demand doesn’t materialize or disappear overnight the way it can in other industries such as retail or travel.
The soaring use of renewables and DER are reshaping the electric utility industry as consumers and other stakeholders clamor for cleaner, decarbonized sources of power. Power utilities around the globe are rethinking their generation portfolio with a keener focus on ridding their operations of planet-warming emissions.