How quickly and efficiently New Jersey can transition to a 100% clean energy future depends in no small part on how the state’s utilities implement energy efficiency and demand management guidance recently issued by New Jersey’s Board of Public Utilities (BPU). At the end of July, the BPU voted 4-0 to approve an Order that largely implements Staff’s Straw Proposals on the 2nd Triennium of Energy Efficiency and Peak Demand Reduction Programs (Triennium 2), an every-three-year regulatory proceeding that defines the scope of utility demand side management programs. Triennium 2 has the potential to foster economic development in New Jersey, increase grid reliability and flexibility, and lower utility bills for residents by leveraging advanced energy technologies and services. However, the promise of these programs is in the hands of the state’s utilities. The NJ BPU designed Triennium 2 in a way that provides utilities with significant leeway to determine how aggressively and ambitiously to implement these programs. To maximize the guidance in this Order, utilities should make significant investments in the three areas covered by Triennium 2: electricity reduction measures, building decarbonization programs, and peak load demand-response initiatives.
This is a brief summary of the ins and outs of Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) Order 2023, issued on July 27, 2023. For more, we encourage you to download our recently released FERC Order 2023 Toolkit or view our webinar recording, “FERC Interconnection Ruling: The First Domino in Transmission Reform,” which discussed how FERC Order 2023 will affect interconnection queues across the country, including the impact on energy customers, developers, and other stakeholders.
Across the country, more than 2 GW of projects—mostly solar, wind, storage, and hybrid projects—sit in interconnection queues waiting to connect to the transmission grid. The process governing these queues is overseen by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), and on July 27, 2023, the Commission took an important step toward un-jamming clogged queues when it unanimously voted to finalize Order No. 2023, a landmark rule directing interconnection reforms. While much work lies ahead to successfully implement the reforms approved by FERC, and to pursue further reform needs not addressed by Order No. 2023, the rule is likely to result in important incremental improvements to the badly broken interconnection process.
Topics: Wholesale Markets
There is much discussion in the press about the high cost of rebuilding our transmission infrastructure to facilitate our clean energy future. There is much less discussion about the costs we are already paying associated with not moving quickly to rebuild our aging grid. Transmission is critical infrastructure, powering our 21st digital economy and keeping us all safe and protecting us when weather is extreme. Much of the U.S. transmission grid is long past its expected useful life.
The Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUCT) began this year by engaging stakeholders on energy efficiency. The pace was ambitious, but now progress has stalled. Through the Energy Efficiency Implementation Project (EEIP), stakeholders participated in biweekly working groups that ran from January through March culminating in a number of recommendations and best practices for the Commission. But the trail has since run cold; Now as ERCOT, Texas’ primary grid operator, issues rapid-fire notices asking Texans to voluntarily reduce their electricity use to avert a grid emergency, we are left to wonder when the Commission will take up the EEIP’s recommendations and unlock Texas’ full energy efficiency potential.
This blog post is an excerpt from the Overview of the Advanced Energy Now 2023 Market Report, prepared for Advanced Energy United by Guidehouse Insights. This post is the third in a series of excerpts from the report.