Assessing the regulatory, technical, and financial viability of alternatives to defer traditional investment in energy delivery infrastructure.

The Challenge

Understanding the cost and impact of emerging grid investment alternatives.

Considering Non-Traditional Solutions (NTS) in meeting the needs electric transmission and distribution (T&D) systems, can defer— and sometimes eliminate—the necessity for large infrastructure investments required to improve capacity and reliability. NTS can include innovative, demand-side, and/or supply-side solutions. Whether due to regulatory mandates, constraints on procuring traditional solutions, renewable portfolio goals, or other policy directives, utilities are looking into the viability of investing in Non-Wire Alternatives (NWA).

Developing a clear and consistent framework for assessing when NTS options are suitable for addressing a system need, and for evaluating proposed solutions against traditional solutions and approaches can be challenging.

NTS assessments and demonstrations require an agreed upon and well understood analytical framework—determining the “best” locations for siting an NTS. Such NTS are often required by regulators to show positive net benefit relative to the next best alternative. There is no one right answer for all situations; each case depends on the utility’s internal operations, grid configuration and conditions, and the regulatory construct in which it operates.

The Solution 

Establishing a strong internal collaborative and multi-departmental team to consider the viability of NTS investments.

NTS represent a creative approach to evaluating alternatives to traditional T&D infrastructure. Many utilities find it beneficial to establish an NTS Program that aligns regulatory mandates and procurement procedures, while facilitating market enablement to identify and evaluate viable solutions. The goal is to align the right skills, strategies, processes, and technologies to meet the demands of today’s utility operations in a competitive and market-based manner.

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West Monroe used its technology, regulatory, and business acumen to develop a highly customizable “plug-and-play” NTS offering.

Our team provides all services related to NTS or any portion thereof, based on utility needs. We’ll train utility staff through an iterative learning and change management approach with the goal of building an internal capacity and capability for NTS work to be conducted in-house.

With an uncommon blend of expertise – including years of utility regulatory experience and skill and experience in T&D, distributed energy resources, demand side management, and energy efficiency technologies – we can help you establish and run an NTS Program tailored to your utility’s operations.

We understand the NTS market landscape and has the experience and expertise to evaluate the problem and define its components so NTS attributes can be correlated and monetized.

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