California’s ambitious environmental policy goals could be easier to achieve with an emerging concept called distributed energy resources. These are small power sources that can be integrated with the electric grid to help meet electricity demand. Examples of distributed resources include solar and wind, energy storage, electric vehicles and demand response.
As of December 2016, the California Public Utilities Commission began a pilot program aimed at incentivizing utilities to adopt distributed resources. The ultimate goal is to allow the three investor-owned utilities, Pacific Gas and Electric, San Diego Gas and Electric and Southern California Edison, to make a profit when distributed resources replace a traditional upgrade. I have written a commentary on this topic for Forbes here.
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