Germany Invests Heavily In Solar Energy

It is now clear the utility business model is changing with the growth of distributed renewable energy sources, policies that support renewables, demand management technology and energy efficiency initiatives, but how these changes develop and how utilities adapt remain open questions. A new report from Black & Veatch sheds some light on these emerging trends.

Integrating additional volumes of renewable energy into the power grid is a challenge that requires balancing technical, regulatory and economic considerations. As homeowners and businesses generate more power from solar, utilities and policymakers must craft systems that fairly compensate all stakeholders. Existing net-metering policies will likely need to be enhanced to account for new realities. One possible net metering adjustment could assign a higher value to power sold back to the grid during peak demand periods when the grid needs it most.

Integrating Renewables into the Power Grid

“That would include looking at the value of solar. Rather than just a flat net-metering policy that’s the same for all customers. And also the value of solar in the various parts of their [utilities] service territory to see whether things could be deferred or whether there are new expenses that might be incurred as a result of the renewables.” – Black & Veatch Strategic Directions Reports