Utilities and Providers

Article, Defense, Government and Politics, Technology, Utilities and Providers

Could hackers knock out our power? It happened in Ukraine

Worries over cyberattacks on the USA are increasing in the aftermath of a presidential election in which the CIA alleged that Russia used such means to influence our electoral process. For the moment, the vulnerability of polling and political operations to hacking gets most of the attention. But this week will mark the one-year anniversary of the first publicly acknowledged cyber incident to take down portions of a power grid, one of the most critical components of a nation’s infrastructure. (Read More)

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Article, Consumer, Corporations, Economy / Finance, Energy, Utilities and Providers

Canada’s Fortis makes inroads into U.S. market

From its remote headquarters in Newfoundland, Canada’s largest investor-owned utility is making inroads into the U.S. energy market. Fortis Inc. began trading on the New York Stock Exchange this month, after completing its acquisition of ITC Holdings, the biggest independent electric transmission company in the U.S., for $11.3 billion. (Read more)

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Article, Consumer, Energy, Utilities and Providers, Weather

Improvements help utilities respond quicker to hurricane storm damage

Hurricane Sandy dealt a devastating blow to the U.S. in 2012, leaving about $70 billion in damages, 147 people dead and millions without electricity, mostly in New York and New Jersey. The impact on the electric grid from Sandy’s storm surge and high winds on the Atlantic coast prompted utility executives and government officials to work more closely than ever to find new ways of coordinating their resources and strengthening infrastructure in response to storms. Four years later, those efforts are paying off. (Read more)

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Article, Climate, Consumer, Economy / Finance, Government and Politics, Policy, Utilities and Providers

More are willing to pay to fight climate change, survey says

How much would you pay on your electric bill to combat climate change? Is $10 or $20 a month reasonable? $50 too much? Or, maybe you’re unwilling to shell out anything at all. A new survey offers some insight regarding the extent to which Americans consider climate change a legitimate threat and how much they’re willing to pay for government policies that would respond to the phenomena. (Read more)

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Article, Energy, Organizations, Technology, Utilities and Providers

Loveless: Solar power’s future bright but has a way to go

The largest solar trade show in North America opens in Las Vegas on Monday with another round of good news for the tiny but growing component of the U.S. electric power supply. Among the announcements planned for the Solar Power International 2016 is a report by GTM Research and the Solar Energy Industries Association that more than 2 gigawatts of solar photovoltaic (PV) systems were installed in the second quarter of 2016 – the 11th straight quarter that solar connections to the grid exceeded 1 gigawatt. (Read more)

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Article, Energy, Government and Politics, Policy, Technology, Utilities and Providers

Utilities’ drone plans cleared for takeoff

Electric utilities across the U.S. are wasting no time taking advantage of new FAA rules authorizing use of drones for commercial purposes. “We’ve certainly heard from our members that they’re excited about this technology,” said Chris Hickling, the director of government relations for the Edison Electric Institute (EEI), the trade group for investor-owned utilities in the U.S. (Read more)

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Article, Corporations, Defense, Government and Politics, Policy, Regulations, Utilities and Providers

Army heeds Obama call, attacks high energy bills

Improving the energy efficiency of buildings is generally considered to be one of the most practical ways that a property owner can cut the cost of lighting, heating and cooling. Now, the U.S. Army is demonstrating in spades the pragmatism of such moves as it surpasses the $1 billion mark in responding to a 2014 challenge by President Obama to all federal agencies to achieve $4 billion in energy savings performance contracts by December. (Read more)

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Consumer, Corporations, Energy, Podcast, Utilities and Providers

Columbia Energy Exchange: Exelon’s Chris Crane

Electric power companies across the U.S. are going through a period of unprecedented change. Low-cost natural gas, new technology, rapid expansion of renewables, and initiatives to reduce carbon emissions are some of the major factors shaking up the electricity sector. Moreover, for some power companies, keeping their nuclear power plants alive is another big challenge. On this episode of Columbia Energy Exchange, we welcome Chris Crane, the president and CEO of Exelon Corp., a Fortune 100 energy company with the most utility customers in the U.S., and the nation’s leading operator of nuclear reactors. Crane talks with host Bill Loveless about the ways in which he is piloting his company through this transformation. And on a timely note, they discuss a new clean energy standard in New York that would keep some nuclear power plants alive. (Listen here)

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Article, Consumer, Economy / Finance, Energy, Technology, Utilities and Providers

Rooftop solar poses credit risk for utilities

When it comes to creditworthiness, electric utilities generally enjoy investment-grade ratings that make financing easier for these capital-intensive companies. But the popularity of residential rooftop solar systems is threatening to eventually put those favorable ratings at risk. So warns Fitch, one of the three major ratings agencies. (Read more)

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Article, Corporations, Economy / Finance, Organizations, Technology, Utilities and Providers

Green energy funding falls from 2015’s record levels

The year 2015 is turning out to be a tough act to follow for new investments in clean energy in the U.S. and around the world. A report by Bloomberg New Energy Finance reveals that financing for solar, wind and other alternatives to fossil fuels in 2016 is down substantially from last year, when a record $348.5 billion was dedicated to projects. (Read More)

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