The latest opinion pieces by industry thought leaders

If you are interested in having your voice heard on Utility Dive's Opinion page, please read our editorial guidelines and fill out the submission form here.

  • Rooftop solar panels at the Soleil Lofts apartment complex in Herriman, Utah
    Image attribution tooltip
    Permission granted by sonnen, Inc.
    Image attribution tooltip

    How utilities can unleash the power of orchestration through virtual power plants

    VPPs offer utilities a powerful tool to grapple with the parallel challenges of enabling electrification and equitable decarbonization while maintaining grid reliability and resilience.

    Patty Cook and Steve Fine • Feb. 29, 2024
  • Windmills in the Coachella Valley of southern California
    Image attribution tooltip Image attribution tooltip

    Pump the brakes on big transmission

    Our current policy enthusiasm for transmission has moved from a responsible cocktail before dinner to a bacchanalia of Roman proportions.

    Vincent Duane • Feb. 28, 2024
  • A rendering of electric power lines against the backdrop of a twilit sky
    Image attribution tooltip
    Imaginima via Getty Images
    Image attribution tooltip

    Advancing energy justice: A new paradigm in grid equity and reliability analysis

    The Michigan Public Service Commission’s decision ordering DTE Electric to run regression analyses and understand energy reliability in diverse communities sets a valuable precedent for other Midwestern states.

    Will Kenworthy and Boratha Tan • Feb. 26, 2024
  • Female technician using digital tablet and fixing electric panel in home
    Image attribution tooltip
    recep-bg via Getty Images
    Image attribution tooltip

    Smart electric panels are not a smart bet

    A recent analysis of the product and commercial landscape, value proposition and alternatives to smart panels concluded that their long-term prospects are dim unless they are significantly stripped of cost and functionality.

    Ben Hertz-Shargel • Feb. 23, 2024
  • Electric vehicles at an EV charging station.
    Image attribution tooltip
    Image attribution tooltip

    Removing demand charge utility tariffs for EV charging will raise CO2 emissions

    To reduce transportation emissions, and fully transition to EVs, the deployment of batteries and battery storage systems is an essential lever that must be incentivized at every level of governance.

    Michael Spurr • Feb. 21, 2024
  • A lithium battery for EVs.
    Image attribution tooltip
    SweetBunFactory via Getty Images
    Image attribution tooltip

    Incentivizing domestic battery machines manufacturing for economic and national security

    By concentrating on homegrown solutions, the U.S. can drive advancements in battery technology, setting new standards for efficiency, sustainability and reliability.

    Bennett Resnik • Feb. 16, 2024
  • Electric transmission lines against a blue and yellow sky.
    Image attribution tooltip
    Fleem via Getty Images
    Image attribution tooltip

    The hidden costs of competition over new transmission infrastructure

    A right of first refusal is not a reward for any utilities or builders at the expense of others. It merely recognizes the need for new infrastructure and provides a first opportunity to those already operating existing infrastructure.

    Benjamin Dierker • Feb. 14, 2024
  • Large electric power transmission lines and modern wind turbines generating electricity in central California.
    Image attribution tooltip
    phleum via Getty Images
    Image attribution tooltip

    What utility commissioners should know about a flawed Western day-ahead market study

    The study reads like an advertisement for a product that’s missing important context and comparisons — and as individual utility filings appear in dockets around the West, public utility commissioners should approach it as such.

    Bob Jenks • Feb. 9, 2024
  • An illustration of a NuScale Power plant layout from 1000ft view
    Image attribution tooltip
    Permission granted by NuScale Power
    Image attribution tooltip

    Lessons from NuScale’s terminated project will help pave the way for advanced nuclear energy

    The advanced nuclear innovation ecosystem remains strong, with a portfolio of public and private investments, multiple technology pathways and diverse business models.

    Judi Greenwald, Jeremy Harrell and Jessica Lovering • Feb. 6, 2024
  • Electric vehicles at an EV charging station.
    Image attribution tooltip
    Image attribution tooltip

    We’re utility commissioners for Georgia and Colorado. Here are key issues we see for an EV future.

    Even back-of-the-envelope math shows that both states may have massive load growth in the future, even beyond individual car owners charging at home, where 80% of charging occurs.

    Tim Echols and Eric Blank • Feb. 2, 2024
  • Inside Detail of Nuclear Reactor
    Image attribution tooltip
    E+ via Getty Images
    Image attribution tooltip

    The collapse of NuScale’s project should spell the end for small modular nuclear reactors

    Although there were problems specific to the Utah Associated Municipal Power Systems project, the financial challenges and cost trends witnessed in that case will afflict any small modular nuclear reactor.

    M.V. Ramana • Jan. 31, 2024
  • A Freightliner eCascadia at Electric Island
    Image attribution tooltip
    Courtesy of Daimler Trucks North America
    Image attribution tooltip

    As trucking electrifies, how we prepare the grid must evolve

    Fleets are often able to procure zero-emissions vehicles and chargers in less than a year. Grid upgrades can take upwards of five or more years.

    Cole Jermyn • Jan. 25, 2024
  • Electrical Power Transmission Lines at Sunset.
    Image attribution tooltip
    Ed Lallo via Getty Images
    Image attribution tooltip

    America’s aging grid threatens national security. Here are some steps to fix it.

    The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission should finalize a strong regional transmission planning and cost allocation rule, which has been under consideration since 2021.

    Michelle J. Howard • Jan. 24, 2024
  • A technician connects cable on a solar rooftop array.
    Image attribution tooltip
    Wichien Tep via Getty Images
    Image attribution tooltip

    Enough with disinformation about community solar compensation

    Whether for systems on single-family homes and multiunit buildings or in community settings, excessive compensation creates a significant economic burden for the very customers who can least afford it.

    Michael Backstrom • Jan. 18, 2024
  • Headquarters of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in Washington, DC, partially out of focus.
    Image attribution tooltip
    Permission granted by Esme Howland
    Image attribution tooltip

    Four key predictions for FERC’s 2024 electricity agenda

    Looming over any predictions are the ever-increasing concerns about the reliability and stability of the nation’s electric grid. Any major reliability event in this election year could instantly reshape FERC’s agenda and priorities.

    William Scherman, Jeffrey Jakubiak, John Decker, Damien Lyster, Jennifer Mansh, Jessica Rollinson and Jake Silver • Jan. 17, 2024
  • Solar Panel Community in Austin Texas
    Image attribution tooltip
    RoschetzkyIstockPhoto via Getty Images
    Image attribution tooltip

    Utilities’ misguided opposition to community solar in California

    With billions on the line from the federal government, California’s three largest utilities are actively working to stop the California Public Utilities Commission from issuing an equitable community solar program.

    Sachu Constantine • Jan. 10, 2024
  • A rendering of an Electric Era charger charging a vehicle.
    Image attribution tooltip
    Permission granted by Electric Era
    Image attribution tooltip

    To spur more EV chargers, regulators must get creative with demand charges

    No matter what the incentives for installing an EV charger, very few businesses will enter this marketplace if selling the product leads to thousands of dollars in charges that aren’t made up for with revenue.

    Chris Kaiser • Jan. 5, 2024
  • An illustration of utility-scale battery storage.
    Image attribution tooltip
    Adeline Kon/Utility Dive
    Image attribution tooltip

    3 keys to optimizing energy storage in 2024

    Energy storage system deployments can be accelerated through a focus on transparency, risk and safety.

    Ryan Franks • Jan. 2, 2024
  • COP28 climate conference in Dubai, UAE
    Image attribution tooltip
    Sean Gallup / Staff via Getty Images
    Image attribution tooltip

    How COP28 is shaping the energy transition

    While decisions at the recent UN climate conference are a significant step forward, more action is needed to ensure a sustainable and resilient future.

    Andrew Keen • Dec. 22, 2023
  • Clean energy wind turbines and solar panels with a high-voltage transmission line.
    Image attribution tooltip
    onurdongel via Getty Images
    Image attribution tooltip

    Good policy by grid operators can address reliability concerns with EPA’s power plant rule

    There is an opportunity through the proposed rule to create more certainty around the timeline for the clean energy transition.

    Michelle Solomon • Dec. 21, 2023
  • Solar panels on solar farm during a sunny day.
    Image attribution tooltip
    schwartstock via Getty Images
    Image attribution tooltip

    The solar PTC is the game-changer that hasn’t been

    But as the market internalizes post-Inflation Reduction Act practices and procedures and adjusts to broader structural changes, optimism remains for the solar production tax credit.

    Akshat Kasliwal and Jesse Gilbert • Dec. 20, 2023
  • businessman is holding a wad of money
    Image attribution tooltip
    turk_stock_photographer via Getty Images
    Image attribution tooltip

    Why states should prohibit utility political contributions

    The 2005 repeal of the Public Utility Holding Company Act left PUCs in 30 states susceptible to political influence, jeopardizing their responsibility to provide consumers with reliable service at just and reasonable rates.

    Mark Van Orden • Dec. 19, 2023
  • Turbines in an offshore wind park in Flevoland, The Netherlands, at sunset.
    Image attribution tooltip
    Fokkebok via Getty Images
    Image attribution tooltip

    How offshore wind wins

    The path forward for this sector is to rapidly go to scale with a business model that delivers net positive impacts for nature and people.

    Johan Bergenas • Dec. 18, 2023
  • Transmission towers in fog at dawn.
    Image attribution tooltip
    Andrei Ksenzhuk via Getty Images
    Image attribution tooltip

    The clean energy transition is here — and so are greenwashing claims

    These claims have the potential to cause reputational harm to a company while distracting attention from its environmentally beneficial activities.

    Majidah Cochran, Melissa Horne, Mindy McGrath, and Andrea Wortzel • Dec. 15, 2023
  • The sun sets behind the photovoltaic (or solar) cells.
    Image attribution tooltip
    Banphote Kamolsanei for iStock via Getty Images
    Image attribution tooltip

    Michigan’s new clean energy package is historic for the country, not just the Midwest

    The state is now a test case for the country on how to take a set of bold clean energy policies and realize its goals to decarbonize the electric grid.

    Laura Sherman • Dec. 14, 2023