Many states and cities across the US are leading the way in creating grid access and utility compliance to promote additional distributed generation (“DG”) resources. This recent growth in customer-sited generation is causing the following
- Enrollment processing – Fixed staffing resources and varying application volumes strain a utility’s ability to meet regulated service
- DG asset tracking – Post-enrollment, utilities lack the record-keeping tools needed to account for resources in distribution and generation planning, operations, and system load forecasting
- Communications gap – Cities and utilities are working in parallel to approve and inspect systems, often with limited collaboration and communication between the two
- Real-time impact on load forecasting - Utilities are finding it difficult to forecast their distributed generation impact on the system load
Understanding these common issues with utilities around DG integration, West Monroe has developed Connect-the-GridTM.
Step-by-step work flow for application approvals
Connect-the-GridTM is a cloud-based resource for utilities that provides step-by-step work flow for application approvals. The Connect-the-GridTM platform serves as an online resource for applicants to learn about requirements, submit and track the status of their application. The tool also allows the utility to monitor and accurately forecast DG resource performance to deliver stable and reliable grid operations.
Connect-the-GridTM is currently piloting at a regulated distribution utility that serves more than a million customers. Key results of this solution include:
- Electronic submissions with error-checking features to increase accuracy.
- Workflow management features to allow the utility to process twice as many applications with existing staff resources.
- Automatic notifications to utility when applications approach approval time requirements.
- Status dashboard provides applicants real-time updates to track approval milestones.
- Distributed generation asset tracking and reporting provides the utility with accurate information of the capacity, type of DG, location of DG, and current DG performance.
- Real-time distributed generation forecasting provides the utility with accurate information to improve generation forecasting by increasing revenue of spare energy and demand or reducing the amount of energy and demand they need to purchase on the spot market.
West Monroe Partners supports electric utilities in confronting the challenges that come with bringing distributed generation resources online and the ongoing management of the impact these resources have on grid operations.
To learn more, please contact Sean Murphy, at firstname.lastname@example.org.