Grid Forward Chats
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.

Episode 4 -  Seattle City Light Adjusts Plans and Prioritizes Customers During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Episode 4 - Seattle City Light Adjusts Plans and Prioritizes Customers During the COVID-19 Pandemic

June 7, 2020

The Seattle area was one of the earliest communities to have to respond to the COVID-19 crisis. We talk with Debra Smith, CEO and general manager of Seattle City Light, about the work that utility is doing to take care of its customers, how it is positioning its system for future grid modernization efforts, how electrification efforts may be impacted, the role that resiliency will play ahead, and much more. Produced by Grid Forward.

Episode 3 - Putting Grid Modernization to the Test in Tacoma

Episode 3 - Putting Grid Modernization to the Test in Tacoma

May 18, 2020
The greater Seattle area was hit early and hard by the COVID pandemic. We hear from the leader at the helm of Tacoma Public Utilities, just south of Seattle, about how their modernization efforts have gone through the health crisis unfolding and the front end of the economic fallout. Does innovation play a key role now? How are employees handling a new way that it means to be resilient? How important is the federal role in supporting grid innovation in a recovery? We tackle these and other key topics with Jackie Flowers, Director of Tacoma Public Utilities. Hosted by Grid Forward.
Episode 1 - Modernizing Regulation in Hawaii for Renewables Through and Beyond the Pandemic

Episode 1 - Modernizing Regulation in Hawaii for Renewables Through and Beyond the Pandemic

May 13, 2020

Hawaii has been leading the country with a charge toward a clean energy future. How are the regulatory and business model elements of the electric grid in the state holding up in the face of the fallout from the global health crisis? Does the economic impacts of managing COVID complicate various efforts in motion there now? We chat with HI PUC Commissioner Jennie Potter about issues to ensure that grid systems effectively accommodate the Aloha State’s ambitious energy transition. The lessons are quite applicable far beyond the island state. Produced by Grid Forward.

Episode 2 - Regulatory and Business Model Toolkit in Dealing with COVID Impacts

Episode 2 - Regulatory and Business Model Toolkit in Dealing with COVID Impacts

May 13, 2020

Diving into the depths of regulatory and business models updates isn’t easy in ordinary times but in this session we get deep into the issues as it pertains to electric grid regulatory structure and evolution of associated models during the times of unprecedented impacts of the COVID crisis and recovery. Does performance-based regulation provide a good pathway now? How can utilities stay whole in these times? How can customers be protected from upward rate pressure? We dive deep into these areas and more in this Grid Forward chat with Matthew McDonnell, Consulting Director at Strategen. Produced by Grid Forward.

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