As generation, transmission and distribution technologies continue to rapidly evolve, Black & Veatch’s 2019 Strategic Directions: Smart Utilities Report finds that utilities are on the cusp of their most visible transformation in more than a century.
Utilities are under immense pressure in the pursuit of maximum uptime and resilience as well as enhanced power quality and lowered carbon footprints. New services are being demanded by customers and new and divergent forms of energy are testing the flexibility and capacity of their networks.
Digital technology and networks are breathing life into utilities’ aging distribution systems just as distributed energy resources (DER) and renewable energy are challenging traditional business models and centralized generation.
Here's a bit of irony: The key drivers of the investments that utilities are making in distribution system modernization stem from assets that utilities often don't own. In this case, we're talking about distributed energy resources such as rooftop solar arrays, electric vehicle sand battery energy storage systems.
Over the past few years, we’ve watched as offshore FLNG capabilities have moved closer to the mainland, offering a very flexible and economical solution to operators looking to offload their supply around the world.
Climate change, a growing global population and accelerating urbanization are deepening concern over the world’s water security. From floods to droughts, too much water to not enough, there doesn’t seem to be an end in sight for the world’s continuing water woes.
Major energy shifts are afoot, and the United States will play a critical role going forward. The EIA projects that by 2022, the U.S. will become a net energy exporter, according to its newly released Annual Energy Outlook 2018. For natural gas, this shift will happen even earlier, around 2020, the EIA says.
In the United States, it’s become somewhat of a modern gold rush: drillers racing to free deeply trapped natural gas to quench rising global demand, fueled by an accelerating migration away from coal and the desire for cleaner-burning, greener energy options.
Recognizing the growing threat that cyber-attacks pose to the national power grid, the U.S. federal government is working to strengthen its protection of our critical infrastructure. According to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the U.S. utility sector faces millions of attempted cyber intrusions per day.
Water management is a critical part of any mining operation, and the impact and cost of mismanagement are becoming increasingly high as miners are held to a stricter level of accountability by stakeholders. Missteps in water management not only increase a mine’s power and operational costs, but they can do irreparable harm to a mining company’s reputation.
Asia accounts for a quarter of global data centre investments. The region is expected to be the fastest growing data centre market during the next five years. India is Asia’s second fastest growing data centre market, behind China.
With their infrastructure graying and renewable energy posing growing threats to their customer bases and bottom lines, electric utilities are awakening to the power afforded by dynamic advances in construction, from the deployment of drones to innovative construction practices.
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