State TA Program

State Technical Assistance Program

Background

The Resources and Assistance for State Energy Offices and Regulators program is funded by the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy as well as the Office of Electricity. The program is offered in conjunction with Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab), Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). The goal of the program is to provide high-impact technical assistance and resources at scales and intervals that are responsive to public utility commissions (PUC) and state energy offices (SEO) needs through multi-modal support options. It is designed to be responsive to a rapidly changing regulatory and policy landscape that seeks to match the timing and depth of questions with National Laboratory subject matter experts (SME) on key topical areas. This program augments and complements current technical assistance activities undertaken by various DOE program offices.

Applying for Technical Assistance Opportunities
  • Help Desk: This type of technical assistance is intended to address inquiries that require a quick, short and narrow response of no more than 4 person-hours. To access this type of technical assistance, a PUC and SEO will complete this short intake form. Within two (2) business days, a representative from the program will acknowledge receipt of the request for technical assistance via email and, if need be, schedule a short conversation to clarify the request. From there, an SME will connect with the requestor within five (5) additional business days to provide no more than 4 person-hours of technical assistance. This type of technical assistance is available starting on March 13th, 2024. To help potential requestors better understand what types of support could be provided, we have created a short video and a few examples herehere, and here.
     
  • Expert Match: This type of technical assistance is intended to address inquiries that require some more time and effort of no more than 80 person-hours. To access this type of technical assistance, a PUC and SEO will complete this short intake form. Within two (2) business days, a representative from the program will acknowledge receipt of the request for technical assistance via email and schedule a short conversation to clarify the request. From there, an SME will connect with the requestor within five (5) additional business days to begin providing technical assistance that will ultimately take no more than 80 person-hours of effort. This type of technical assistance is available starting on April 1st, 2024. To help potential requestors better understand what types of support could be provided, we have created a short video and a few examples herehere, and here.
     
  • Deep Dive: This type of technical assistance is intended to address inquiries that require considerable time and effort of multiple person-months. To access this type of technical assistance, a PUC and SEO will need to complete a detailed application form, similar to this one  Unfortunately, the application deadline for the first cohort of states passed. on June 19th, 2024. For those states who submitted an application, awardees will be notified as early as mid- September.  To help potential future requestors better understand what types of support could be provided, we have created a short video.  A public webinar providing details about the program and the application process, jointly hosted by DOE, the National Labs, NARUC and NASEO, was recorded on May 3, 2024, and can be viewed here
Topical Areas Eligible for Technical Assistance

Although this program is willing to answer questions and provide support on virtually any electricity-related topic, it is focused on addressing PUC and SEO inquiries on the following key topical areas:

  • Integrated Grid Planning & End-Use Technology Integration
    • Planning for End-Use Adoption (DERs – EVs, buildings & industry, PV, energy storage) & Load Forecasting
    • Electric Infrastructure Expansion (Behind-the-meter, Distribution, Bulk Power System)
    • Regional Coordination with Bulk Power System Operators
  • End-Use, Distribution, and Bulk-Power Operation
    • System Visibility, Control, and Communications
    • Institutional Roles and Responsibilities (Aggregator vs. Distribution Utility vs. DSO)
    • End-use Device Integration & Flexibility (Including Codes, Standards, and Best Practices) 
  • Electricity Markets & Compensation
    • Enabling Flexible End-use Technology Participation in Electricity Markets (EV Managed Charging, Building Demand Response, Behind-the-Meter Storage, etc.)
    • Evolving Retail and Wholesale Services, Participation Models, and Compensation
  • Resource Adequacy, Reliability, and Resilience
    • Resource Adequacy in the Energy Transition
    • Reliability in a Predominately Inverter-Based Resource Environment
    • Extreme Weather Given Increased Electrification  
DER Adoption & Integration

DER Interconnection Workshop

Presented to GMLC TA to State PUCs DER Interconnection Cohort. 

Presented on December 15, 2022, by M. Ingram, D. Narang, X. Li, C. Marguis, D. Lew, and S. Forrester. National Renewable Energy Laboratory and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

Abstract: Provides an overview of and implications for PUCs on: FERC Order 2222; DER Aggregation and Integration into Wholesale Markets and Operation; Allowing DER Aggregations and FERC Order 719; and Using IEEE 1547 Standard in Support of DER Aggregation.

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Members-Only Interconnection Standards Technical Assistance Workshop

Presented to National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners. 

Presented on July 17, 2022, by D. Sass Byrnett, M. Ingram, D. Narang, and R. Subramaniam. National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, and Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers.

Abstract: Highlights challenges, needs, existing resources, and support materials relevant for state regulators interested in updating interconnection standards.

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Grid Planning

Developing Forecasts: Basics & Best Practices

Presented to GMLC TA to State PUCs Forecasting Cohort. 

Presented on January 30, 2023, by: N. Mims Frick, A. Campbell, E. Hale, B. Tarufelli, A. Satre-Meloy, C. Holland, and A. Sekar. Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, and National Renewable Energy Laboratory.

Abstract: Provides an overview of and best practices associated with developing forecasts, including forecasting of utility load, energy efficiency, demand flexibility, building electrification, electric vehicles, distributed solar, distributed battery storage, and utility costs.

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Quantifying Locational Net Benefits of DER for Distribution Systems

Presented to Utah Grid Modernization Stakeholder Collaborative. 

Presented on September 7, 2022, by: A. Satchwell, N. Mims Frick, and M. Heleno. Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. 

Abstract: Provides an overview of: 1) state requirements for distribution system planning relevant to state regulators as it relates to distributed energy resources (DER) including hosting capacity analysis, interconnection, non-wires alternatives, and DER tariffs; and 2) Current methodologies for integrating distributed energy resources into distribution system planning and their implementation challenges relevant to state regulators

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Duke Energy’s Integrated System and Operations Planning: A comparative analysis of integrated planning practices

(2023). J. Keen, E. Pohl, N. Frick, JP Carvallo, L. Schwartz. 

Abstract: Technical review of Duke Energy's Integrated System Operations Planning framework examining how it interacts with other electricity system planning processes in South Carolina. The information may be useful to audiences in other states interested in integrated distribution system planning. 

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Equity and Justice

Assessing the Current State of U.S. Energy Equity Regulation and Legislation

(2023). N. Hanus, J. Barlow, A. Satchwell, and P. Cappers. Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, February.

Abstract: Identifies, organizes and summarizes state energy equity executive, legislative, and regulatory actions undertaken between January 2020 and July 2022

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Developing an Equity Framework for State Regulatory Decision-Making

(2023). S.P. Forrester and A.J. Satchwell. Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, August.

Abstract: Presents a framework for states that seek to incorporate equity into regulatory decision-making.

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Resilience

Considerations for Resilience Guidelines for Clean Energy Plans: For the Oregon Public Utility Commission and Oregon Electricity Stakeholders

(2022). J.S. Homer, K.M. Boenker, A.A. Lipert, K. Oikonomou, R. Tapio, and H.J Corsair. Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and Oak Ridge National Laboratory, September

Abstract: Summarizes relevant approaches, research, models, and national examples for state utility regulators tasked with developing utility guidelines for risk-based resiliency planning.

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The Value of Sharing and Consolidating Critical Community, Electricity, and Natural Hazard Information

(2023). C. Sparti, P. Larsen, and T. Huntington. Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, August.  

Abstract: Review of hazard mitigation plans in California to develop a common, but generic, data taxonomy showing fields to collect to encourage consolidating and sharing of this information in the future.

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Regulation

Evaluating the X-Factor: A Brief Overview of Methodologies and Best Practices

(2023). B. Tarufelli and M. Weimar. Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (Journal pre-print PNNL-SA-181924), June.

Abstract: Technical overview of common methodologies, assumptions, and their potential biases, as well as recommendations for improving the evaluation of total factor productivity studies, focusing on the aspects of developing the X-Factor.

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Contact

Questions? Email [email protected]