Utility leaders explore future of distributed energy

More than half of utility leaders surveyed believe there will not be significant changes in how services are provided to customers within the decade. A similar proportion of the 366 respondents think a regulated environment is needed […]

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By Jonny Bairstow

More than half of utility leaders surveyed believe there will not be significant changes in how services are provided to customers within the decade.

A similar proportion of the 366 respondents think a regulated environment is needed before large-scale adoption of Distributed Energy Resources (DER) can take place.

New statistics revealed by Navigant Consulting and Public Utilities Fortnightly summarise conversations with utility leaders to explore the role of DER in electricity generation.

Solar photovoltaic (70%), energy efficiency (42%), demand response (40%) and energy storage (39%) are predicted to be the most widespread DER solutions by 2025. However, the ability to provide reliable power is still considered the most important role, significantly ahead of affordability and green power.

More than 80% of respondents believe customers’ demand for choice and control will change moderately (50%) or substantially (33%) in the future.

Jan Vrins, Leader of Navigant’s Global Energy segment said: “While utility stakeholders voice widespread consensus that the industry is facing profound change and advances in technology and changing customer demands present new opportunities and challenges, the lack of urgency to change the services offered to customers surfaced in this report is concerning.”