The electricity sector is in the midst of transformational change, driven by advances in distributed technology, the growth of accessible North American natural gas reserves, and increasing policy emphasis on reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Together, these trends are driving exponential growth in distributed energy resources across the country. At the end of 2014, more than half a million homes had solar panels installed.
To keep pace with this change, utilities and regulatory agencies from coast to coast have been evaluating regulatory and rate structures, grid operations, infrastructure planning, and customer engagement strategies. Policies like net metering, renewable energy credits, community choice, and energy efficiency incentives are being reexamined to better align outcomes within this changing landscape.
Through this transformation, Con Edison sees opportunity to better serve our customers, enhance our efficiency, advance cost-effective clean energy, and create additional value for our shareholders. As we move forward, we believe our customers must remain at the center of what we do. Utilities must also do more to work hand-in-hand with third parties to develop innovative new solutions, fully integrate alternative energy resources into the grid, and unlock the potential of a more interactive customer-centric grid.
In New York, the Public Service Commission instituted the “Reforming the Energy Vision” proceeding in April 2014. This initiative takes a holistic view of the future of the electricity sector, with the goal of animating distributed energy markets, enhancing customer engagement, and enhancing power system efficiency.
Con Edison’s Utility of the Future team is working in partnership with the New York State Public Service Commission to advance these objectives and coordinate measures across the company to explore future utility models.