Grid Forward Chats
Ep. 14 - Creating the Grid We Need for Deep Decarbonization

Ep. 14 - Creating the Grid We Need for Deep Decarbonization

October 21, 2020

During the closing session of our GridFWD 2020 virtual event, Hunter Lovins (President, Natural Capitalism Solutions) led a discussion with Ralph Cavanagh of NRDC and Elliot Mainzer, the new CEO and president of the California ISO. This lively discussion covers future of distribution utilities, the role of regional markets, the impact of distributed resources, solutions for resilient systems and much more. If you haven’t heard these folks talk before (or even if you have many times) do yourself a favor and listen into this deeply thought-provoking, but also very applied, discussion. Produced by Grid Forward.

Ep. 13 - The Path to 100% Clean Energy at Xcel

Ep. 13 - The Path to 100% Clean Energy at Xcel

October 21, 2020

Grid Forward hosted Alice Jackson, President of Xcel Energy Colorado during the opening session of our virtual GridFWD 2020 event. Listen in as she walks through what it takes for a major utility to create a roadmap to a fully clean energy future. From system modernization and electrification to transmission and regional market access, this discussion covers all the elements needed to achieve such an ambitious milestone. As one of the first major utilities to make this commitment, Xcel is poised to be a leading force for grid modernization and clean energy across the Rocky Mountain and Midwest states. Produced by Grid Forward.

Ep. 12 - Opportunities for Transmission to Unlock Deeper Renewables

Ep. 12 - Opportunities for Transmission to Unlock Deeper Renewables

September 29, 2020
Bryce chats with Lisa Grow, President and CEO of IDACORP, Inc. and Idaho Power, the largest electric provider in the state, about their commitment to a fully clean energy mix. In the path to a clean energy future they are looking to expand transmission capacity, optimize participation in regional markets, develop modern grid capabilities and more. Hear about what Lisa thinks around the role of Idaho Power, and utilities more broadly, in the future of the electric grid. Produced by Grid Forward.
Ep. 11 - How Do 2019 Plans Work in 2021, with Colorado PUC Chair Ackermann

Ep. 11 - How Do 2019 Plans Work in 2021, with Colorado PUC Chair Ackermann

September 21, 2020

In this lively discussion with Colorado PUC Chair Jeffrey Ackermann we explore how well-established plans from 2019 are relevant going into 2021. Colorado is deep into energy transition areas with, for example, Xcel Energy driving for a fully decarbonized energy mix, the expansion of electrified transportation, and a modern infrastructure that can accommodate both. This chat spans many current topics around distribution system planning, allocating risk and rewards, funding innovation, empowering customers, distributed-vs-large scale solutions, and much more. And find out which one of us is a dog person vs which is a cat person — both of our companions crash the conversation! Produced by Grid Forward.

Episode 10 - Energy Market Innovation with AEMO CEO Audrey Zibelman

Episode 10 - Energy Market Innovation with AEMO CEO Audrey Zibelman

August 25, 2020

After spearing the REV proceedings in New York, Audrey Zibelman headed down under to lead the Australian Energy Market Operator which recently issued its Integrated Systems Plan for the national power market in Australia. We talk with Audrey across a wide diversity of topics: from trends in market structure and integration of deep levels of distributed assets, to how energy markets with deep renewables near zero marginal cost deal with familiar issues like minimum load and voltage regulation. If you have not heard Audrey before, buckle up for profuse insights that cut right into the most dynamic aspects of electric industry. Recorded at the Grid Forward virtual Annual Member Meeting August 20, 2020.

Episode 9 - Ensuring Grid Resiliency Through Robust Applied Research

Episode 9 - Ensuring Grid Resiliency Through Robust Applied Research

July 29, 2020

Listen into our in-depth conversation with Carl Imhoff who beyond his role with Pacific Northwest National Labs (PNNL) leads the Grid Modernization Lab Consortium, a partnership of the U.S. national labs. PNNL and other national labs are doing both basic and applied research to make the power grid more resilient, flexible and secure. Don't know much about dynamic contingency analysis or remedial action schemes for grid operational continuity? This is a great chance to get up to speed. Working on networked phasor measurement units, future grid architectures or grid scale storage? Get a sense for how our national resources are working to move them ahead. Listen into what PNNL and the national labs are doing to support industry. Produced by Grid Forward.

Episode 8 - Expanding Renewables and Grid Modernization at Pacific Power

Episode 8 - Expanding Renewables and Grid Modernization at Pacific Power

July 29, 2020

We chat with Stefan Bird, President and CEO of Pacific Power, a division of PacifiCorp. PacifiCorp serves customers across a number of western states and the scale of its operations is rather unique in the west. Hear about the 6,000 MW - yes, 6GW! - of renewable resources included in its most recent request for proposals. In working across hundreds of communities in the wider region, Stefan explains how the utility is putting innovation to work to continue bringing reliable, low-cost energy to its customers. Produced by Grid Forward.

Episode 7 - How to Build A More Effective Structure for Energy Ecosystems

Episode 7 - How to Build A More Effective Structure for Energy Ecosystems

July 14, 2020

Listen to this fascinating chat with Rich Sedano, the CEO of Regulatory Assistance Project, a non-profit that provides policy advice and technical assistance on utility and energy issues to governments around the world. We focus on issues in the US, diving headfirst into deep topics like these: the prospects for performance-based regulation expansion; breaking down silos between agencies and sectors; where energy infrastructure can support equity outcomes; how regulators and government agencies can have more active relationships with utilities and the market; encouraging the diversity of solutions for delivery of electric services; how innovation can come through utilities; shifting utility structures to optimize investments; solutions for expanding customer and grid resiliency; metrics for tracking important progress and outcomes; leveraging the power system as a strategic resource for solving wider societal challenges and more. If you are interested in any way with utility business models and regulatory and energy market structures, don't miss this discussion! Produced by Grid Forward.

Episode 6 - Bringing Innovation to Life With Customer Needs at the Core

Episode 6 - Bringing Innovation to Life With Customer Needs at the Core

July 14, 2020

Portland General Electric has a long history of innovation with its grid operations and community engagement. Listen to CEO Maria Pope discuss their priorities as they keep customers at the core while ensuring financial stability and putting their innovative thinking into practice. Maria covers topics announced just before the session recording including: Portland General’s new program for 500 customers to install at-home storage; how their three-substation smart grid test bed has reached 56% of customer participation with some flexible load management; projects with regional stakeholders to optimize renewable energy resources; and how they stood at the center of support of the recently passed House bill on transportation electrification support. While the health and economic crises have affected capital expenditures and operating expenses, hear how Portland General remains dedicated to having a clean, resilient system that meets the needs of the customers and communities they serve. Produced by Grid Forward.

Episode 5 - Making People Part of the Energy Solution at Uplight

Episode 5 - Making People Part of the Energy Solution at Uplight

June 8, 2020

Uplight merged not two but six companies in 2019. We check in with Justin Segall, founder of Simple Energy and now Chief Strategy Officer of Uplight on how all those parts are now working fully together. With the deep insights Uplight has about energy customers, we delve into how end users are doing through the pandemic, how demand side programs continue to provide grid value (and are more easily accessed) for customers, why scale matters, where innovation plays a role ahead, and more. Produced by Grid Forward.

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