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Perspective

Let's Make it Easier: Go All In on Distributed Energy Integration

This Technology Puts More Power in the Hands of Self-Generators

Data is power. And once operators of commercial and industrial properties have the technology to track their daily use of electricity—down to the minute—they’re going to use the literal form of power only when they need it.

For electric utilities, that spells less revenue. Even less when those customers start to, or increase, generation of their own power.

It’s no secret that businesses want to decrease utility expenses. Beyond using resources more efficiently, many are exploring their options, or achieving financial savings, in these ways:

  1. Self-generation with rooftop solar, microgrids and battery storage.
  2. Data analytics that depict how power is used across complexes.

The first is an investment in lower energy costs, and for many, a significant step toward meeting sustainability goals. The second helps companies understand and adjust patterns of electrical use, as well as store energy to offset the variability of renewables. Analytics also enable self-generators to earn revenue selling excess energy back to the grid.

Digital intelligence helps utilities and self-generators optimize asset life cycles. The cloud-based data analytics platform ASSET360® does it all, from monitoring system performance to detecting issues and recommending remediation.

Shifting Customer Demand Presents Utilities with Potential New Role

Because the data analytics technology is not exclusive to one type of electricity generator, traditional utilities might view this new energy landscape as a threat to their market positions as primary power providers. Alternatively, they could view it as an opportunity to adjust their business models and go all in as systems integrators.

Systems integrators recognize commercial and industrial customers have increasing amounts of access to distributed energy resources and associated technologies. However, they also know their customers ultimately rely on them for transmission and distribution services.

Plus, customers need integrators who openly share their knowledge and expertise on how to best connect systems to increase efficiency, resiliency and performance. Ultimately, electricity must flow smoothly, and safely, to and from buildings, homes, power plants and renewable sources. That will require smart technology, and even smarter integrators.

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