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Power Imperative: Managing Distributed Renewables

By Phill Feltham

A diverse array of factors has driven the uptake of distributed generation among utility customers and these trends are likely to continue, requiring utilities to employ the latest strategies and technologies to accommodate distributed generation at the distribution level. The drivers are many, and relatively well known.

Aging power infrastructure across the United States is eroding reliability metrics. Extreme weather events have renewed customer interest in reliability and resiliency. Customers are increasingly concerned with self-sufficiency and energy’s environmental impacts. The improved performance and dropping cost of rooftop solar photovoltaic (PV) arrays have made it the leading choice in distributed generation for residential customers.

Moreover, state-level policies in some cases encourage solar PV adoption. Looking ahead, solar PV uptake is likely to accelerate anew when its capabilities are integrated into building materials such as roofing tiles.

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