The Future of Utilities Looks Uncertain | MIT Technology Review

Posted: November 4, 2015 in Uncategorized

“Many companies, such as the largely coal-based utilities of the Midwest, have chosen resistance and litigation as they attempt to hold off dramatic change. Others are still studying the issue while trying to milk their existing (again, largely fossil-fuel-based) plants as long as possible. Others, spying an opportunity to be leaders in the emerging energy economy, are trying to transform their businesses as rapidly as possible. The irony of the San Diego clash is that San Diego Gas & Electric is squarely in the latter camp. The company says it now has 64,000 customers producing their own power from solar arrays, representing more than 450 megawatts—the capacity of a good-sized conventional power plant. Saying it is committed to enabling the spread of rooftop solar, the company recently introduced a “Renewable Meter Adapter,” a device that quickly connects solar panels to the home’s electric meter, avoiding the need for costly upgrades. The new devices “will help to put solar within the reach of more of our customers in a way that is efficient, safe, and reliable,” Caroline Winn, the utility’s chief energy delivery officer, said in a statement. Critics, who include the Sierra Club, quickly pointed out that the adapters cost $1,300 apiece.” (Excerpt)


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