The costs to electric utility customers from short-term, limited geographic scale power disruptions have been studied for many years. However, there is increasing interest among regulators, policy-makers, and utilities in the economic consequences of interruptions that are of longer duration (days, weeks or longer) and of larger geographic scope (entire metropolitan areas or regions).
Projections for 2030: Higher Spending, Modest Rise in Energy Savings for Efficiency Programs Funded by Electricity Customers
Electric utility customers spent about $5.8 billion on energy efficiency programs in 2016 to cost-effectively offset a portion of growth in U.S. power needs. That, in turn, affects the need for investment in new electricity infrastructure, across generation, transmission and distribution systems. A new study by Berkeley Lab provides a bottom-up assessment of the potential impact of existing and likely state policies and market conditions to promote or constrain future spending and savings for electricity efficiency programs funded by utility customers in all U.S. states.
According to a recent industry report, a little over 55% of U.S. households now have smart meters. This presents utilities with an opportunity to leverage the rich data these systems provide to better understand their customers and make data-driven decisions concerning optimal rate or program portfolio planning and implementation.
Summary of UT Austin Student Capstone Projects
We are pleased to release a summary of the key findings from seven different papers completed by teams of University of Texas (UT) at Austin students, each of which explored a different aspect of the solar market.
Berkeley Lab estimates sustained electric power interruptions cost the U.S. approximately $44 billion annually—a 25% increase since 2006.
Interest in electricity reliability and resilience in the United States has increased dramatically since Berkeley Lab first estimated the national cost of sustained power interruptions in 2006. “Yet, we’re not aware of any peer-reviewed literature on the economic impacts of these power interruptions since our prior work” says author Kristina LaCommare.
Berkeley Lab, working with the U.S. Department of Energy’s Building Technologies Office, is hosting a free webinar on November 1, 2018, to discuss recent research on the time-sensitive value of energy efficiency.
eProject Builder reaches milestone of 600 projects and over 1,000 users trained; tool named as finalist in the R&D 100 awards
eProject Builder ( ePB ), an energy project data management tool developed by Berkeley Lab, recently reached a milestone of 600 projects initiated and over 1,000 users trained. ePB is also a finalist in the 2018 R&D 100 awards—the “Oscars” of innovation.
We are pleased to announce the release of the latest edition of Berkeley Lab’s annual Tracking the Sun report. The report describes installed prices and other trends among distributed photovoltaic (PV) systems in the United States, based on an underlying dataset of more than 1.3 million PV systems (with transaction prices for 770,000 systems). This latest edition focuses primarily on trends through year-end 2017, with preliminary data for the first half of 2018.
We are pleased to release the 2018 edition of Berkeley Lab’s Utility-Scale Solar report, which presents analysis of empirical project-level data from the U.S. fleet of ground-mounted solar projects with capacities exceeding 5 MW-AC.
In conjunction with the release of the annual Wind Technologies Market Report, prepared for the U.S. Department of Energy, Berkeley Lab has produced a series of interactive data visualizations that allow users to explore some of the data from the report.
New wind energy report finds better performance, lower costs, and wind energy prices at ~ 2¢/kWh.
WEBINAR ANNOUNCEMENT: The Future of Transportation Electrification: Utility, Industry and Consumer Perspectives
Report No. 10 in the Future Electric Utility Regulation series
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) presents a free webinar on September 13, 2018 to discuss a new report, The Future of Transportation Electrification: Utility, Industry and Consumer Perspectives.
Announcing Pair of Research Products Related to the Value of Power System Reliability and Resilience
Guidebook and user-friendly online tool provide basis for valuing the benefits of utility investments in power system reliability and resilience
The Cost of Saving Electricity Through Energy Efficiency Programs Funded by Utility Customers: 2009–2015
Cost of Saving Electricity Remains Low
The average cost to utilities to save a kilowatt-hour (kWh) in the United States is 2.5 cents, according to the most comprehensive assessment to date of the cost performance of energy efficiency programs funded by electricity customers.
We are pleased to announce a new Berkeley Lab report, Impacts of High Variable Renewable Energy Futures on Wholesale Electricity Prices, and on Electric-Sector Decision Making.
We are pleased to announce a new study conducted jointly by Berkeley Lab and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), entitled Estimating the Value of Improved Distributed Photovoltaic Adoption Forecasts for Utility Resource Planning. A free webinar will also be held on May 24 at 10 am Pacific / 1 pm Eastern.
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) are presenting a free webinar on May 14, 2018, to discuss a new report, Distribution System Planning - State Examples by Topic.
New tool from Berkeley Lab and partners will enable crucial assessments by Departments of Defense and Homeland Security and greater access for wind energy researchers
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab), in collaboration with public and private partners, is pleased to announce the release of the most comprehensive publicly available database yet of U.S. wind turbine locations and characteristics. The United States Wind Turbine Database (USWTDB) will allow unparalleled ability for government agencies and others to conduct research and make planning decisions.
New study finds that the market value of offshore wind varies significantly along the U.S. east coast
A new study from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory finds that the ‘market value’ of offshore wind—considering energy, capacity, and renewable energy certificates (RECs)—varies significantly along the U.S. east coast, and generally exceeds that of land-based wind in the region.
We are pleased to announce a new Berkeley Lab report, Income Trends of Residential PV Adopters: An analysis of household-level income estimates. The study relies on a unique combination of datasets to describe income characteristics and trends among roughly 800,000 residential rooftop solar adopters located across 13 U.S. states. It is the most-comprehensive analysis of this type to-date, and one of few to utilize household-level income estimates.