- Utilities and regulators should focus on lowering energy use, not on distributed generation, according to Ralph Izzo, Public Service Enterprise Group chairman and CEO.
- Distributed generation is much less efficient than centralized power, Izzo said in an interview.
- Looking ten years ahead, Izzo hopes his utility company will be helping customers lower their power usage and, if they need it, providing distributed energy resources.
Izzo wants more focus on efficiency. “We've spent last year $1.6 billion on transmission,” Izzo said. “Over the past three years we've spent $1 billion on solar. Over that same time frame we've spent $300 million on energy efficiency. And it's a failure of our regulatory system.”
“Rather than having [customers] think about how they can self-supply, let's think about how they can use less supply,” Izzo said. “And that's what I complain about in that when people think about utility 2.0, the next generation, they think of this distributed generation and smart grids and microgrids. Let's think about needing it less, period, and focus our energy there.”
Energy efficiency advocates will be applauding Izzo's comments. However, as distributed resources like solar fall in price, customers will choose rooftop solar because it saves them money.