On March 9, 2016, the Connecticut Power and Energy Society held its annual Energy, Environment and Economic Development Conference. The conference began with keynote remarks from Fred Carstensen, Professor of Finance and Economics at the University of Connecticut School of Business, who provided an overview of Connecticut’s economic outlook. Carstensen stressed Connecticut’s need for a more holistic vision and integrated approach to stimulating economic growth in the state. The conference also featured a keynote presentation by Daniel Sosland, President of Acadia Center, who discussed the shift toward a lower-carbon, consumer-focused energy future. Sosland stressed the importance of grid-modernization efforts to empower energy consumers and integrate greater levels of distributed energy resources. The conference also featured panel discussions on energy leadership at the local level, advanced technology in energy storage, and regional energy solutions to address challenges facing the electric grid.
After an update from Katie Scharf Dykes, Deputy Commissioner for Energy at the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, Governor Malloy addressed attendees on the efforts made at the state and regional level to achieve a cheaper, cleaner, more reliable energy future for Connecticut. Malloy highlighted the 2011 merger of the Department of Environmental Protection and Department of Public Utility Control to form the new Department of Energy and Environmental Protection with a coordinated approach to energy and environmental challenges confronting the state. Malloy also championed the creation of the Connecticut Green Bank, which expects to attract $500 million in private investment for clean energy projects by the end of the fiscal year. Finally, Malloy highlighted Connecticut’s leadership role in regional discussions on the need for additional investments in energy infrastructure in New England.
Connecticut DEEP Issues RFP
Connecticut DEEP has issued its final RFP for the 2-20 MW Renewable, Passive Demand Response & Energy Storage procurement. DEEP has also issued its Draft RFP for Natural Gas Capacity, LNG and Natural Gas Storage. The documents are available at the following links: Gas, 2-20 MW Renewables
Regional and Industry Developments:
ISO-NE Consumer Liaison Group Meets in Connecticut
On March 10, 2016, the Consumer Liaison Group (CLG) met in Cromwell, Connecticut to discuss “Solar Development in New England: Consumer Protection, Costs and Benefits, and What Does it Mean for the Wholesale Market?”
The CLG is a forum for sharing information between ISO New England and those who ultimately use and pay for electricity in New England—residential, commercial, and industrial customers. It was formed in 2009 to meet the need, as cited in Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) Order No. 719, for heightened communication between Regional Transmission Organizations and their stakeholders, with a particular focus on electricity consumers, consumer advocates, and state government regulators. The CLG organizes four quarterly meetings a year and is governed by a Coordinating Committee, which selects the topics and speakers for all of the meetings.
The meeting featured keynote speaker Elin Swanson Katz, Connecticut’s Consumer Counsel, who discussed the growth of solar in Connecticut and the need to continually analyze the suite of incentives supporting solar development in Connecticut. Solar policy, she said, impacts virtually every aspect of the electric industry, including cost, emissions, customer choice, economic development, and jobs.
Joseph Rosenthal, Principal Attorney for the Connecticut Office of Consumer Counsel, moderated a panel of energy industry and ISO representatives to discuss solar development in Connecticut and the New England region. Panelists included:
- Camilo Serna, Vice President, Strategic Planning & Policy, Eversource Energy
- Dan Hendrick, Director of External Affairs, NRG Energy
- Mackey Dykes, Vice President, Commercial & Industrial Programs, Connecticut Green Bank
- Carissa Sedlacek, Director of Resource Adequacy, System Planning, ISO New England
- Paul Peterson, Principal Associate, Synapse Energy Economics, Inc.
The meeting concluded with an update from Anne George, Vice President of External Affairs & Corporate Communications for ISO New England, who discussed the results of Forward Capacity Auction #10, the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling on demand response, and wholesale electricity costs for 2015.
All of the speaker presentations are available on the CLG website. The next quarterly CLG meeting will be held at the DoubleTree Hotel in Westborough, Massachusetts on June 17, 2016.
Connecticut Energy Evolution Grabs Headlines
The Hartford Business Journal examines Connecticut’s energy evolution – http://www.hartfordbusiness.com/article/20160307/PRINTEDITION/303039927
New York Public Service Commission’s Rules Governing Electric Service Companies Challenged in Court