2020 Utility Conference May 4 - 6, 2020 Charlotte, NC Register Now Overview Registration Schedule Full Agenda Workshop and Events Speakers Sponsorship Travel & Accommodations Close The Circuit Party Advisory Committee No angles, just answers to hit your clean energy goals Agenda Check back frequently for updates. Conference Event Transportation Electrification Grid Integration Utility Business Models Regulatory Innovation Filter by track Conference Event Transportation Electrification Grid Integration Utility Business Models Regulatory Innovation Monday 5.4 9:30 AM - 5:30 PM Registration Conference Event 9:30 AM - 5:30 PM 10:00 AM - 4:30 PM Add On: Technology Tour Conference Event 10:00 AM - 4:30 PM Add a 1/2-day on-site trip to your conference experience to see how one utility is incorporating variable assets into their distribution grid. Attendees will travel to several local locations including Duke Energy's Renewable Control Center, which provides critical monitoring services for all of Duke Energy Renewables operating assets, which total about 3,000 megawatts (MW), and the Monroe Solar Facility that features over 680,000 thin film solar panels that generate more than 100 million kWh annually! 10:00 AM - 4:30 PM Add On: Interconnection 201 Conference Event 10:00 AM - 4:30 PM The workshop will investigate challenges and opportunities to the interconnection process resulting from the rapid growth of distributed energy resources such as solar+storage installations as well as the advent of new microgrid installations. Attendees will be introduced to interconnection regulatory trends and best practices from utilities around the country and the impacts IEEE 1547, IEEE 2030.5, and FERC rulings have on interconnection standards. The workshop will also hone in on the impacts from legislatively driven requirements/ goals or mandates for specific technologies from various jurisdictions. Finally, workshop participants will discuss how interconnection processes can be evolved to ensure fair and equitable treatment for all market participants including utilities, DER developers, and distribution customers. 5:30 PM - 6:30 PM Evening Welcome Reception Conference Event 5:30 PM - 6:30 PM Tuesday 5.5 6:00 AM - 7:15 AM Fun Run Conference Event 6:00 AM - 7:15 AM Lobby 7:30 AM - 5:00 PM Registration Conference Event 7:30 AM - 5:00 PM 8:00 AM - 8:45 AM Breakfast with Solution Providers Conference Event 8:00 AM - 8:45 AM Interconnection Lounge 8:45 AM - 9:15 AM Welcomes and Introduction Conference Event 8:45 AM - 9:15 AM Interconnection Lounge Moderators Julia Hamm President and CEO, Smart Electric Power Alliance 9:15 AM - 10:00 AM Opening General Session: A Carbon Free Energy Future - Setting the Stage for 2030, 40, 50 and Beyond Conference Event 9:15 AM - 10:00 AM Interconnection Lounge The 2020 Utility Conference opening general session will feature a fireside chat with utility executives who will investigate the challenges, opportunities, and realities of achieving a carbon free energy future. This conversation will probe issues including the insurability and investment risk of fossil fuel assets, an analysis of recently implemented carbon reduction strategies, and much more. A perfect start to the conference. Moderators Julia Hamm President and CEO, Smart Electric Power Alliance 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM EV Education of Utility Customers Transportation Electrification 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM Room 1 Research indicates that gaps in consumer awareness present barriers for automakers and others seeking to accelerate EV adoption. Electric utilities can help bridge this gap through investment in education, but to-date less than two percent of the total $1.18 billion in approved transportation electrification funding has funded these efforts. Learn utility best practices for proactively educating customers by raising awareness about the technology, encouraging beneficial charging behavior, coordinating with key stakeholders, such as dealerships and permitting/zoning officials, and developing programs to incentivize EV purchases. Moderators Brad Benton Senior Manager, Membership, Smart Electric Power Alliance 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM Evaluating DERs as Non-Wires Alternatives in Distribution System Planning Grid Integration 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM Room 3 Understanding the role of DERs in creating distribution value can be difficult. Utilities, regulatory commissions and solution providers are examining how to weigh the costs and benefits of incorporating DERs in place of traditional investments. This session will discuss the processes of integrating NWAs into distribution planning processes, criteria for evaluating projects, and the lessons learned from evaluating these projects. Moderators Brenda Chew Senior Manager, Research, Smart Electric Power Alliance 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM Carbon Reduction Strategies and ESG Utility Business Models 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM Room 2 Market forces are pushing investors to reconsider risk in investor-owned utilities. What does this mean for utility employees who will lead the change to a carbon free energy future, but are not in C-Suite meetings or on investor calls? This session will investigate challenges for different utility business models, describe the effect that environmental, social, governance (ESG) investing will have, and share best practices to gain stakeholder support of new investments. Moderators Natalia Mathura Principal, Utility Business Models, Smart Electric Power Alliance 11:00 AM - 11:30 AM Coffee Break with Speed Networking Conference Event 11:00 AM - 11:30 AM Interconnection Lounge 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM Difficulty Connecting: The Bumpy Road for Smart Home Technology, and What Utilities Can Do to Smooth the Way Grid Integration 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM Room 2 Hear Industry leaders' thoughts on the tricks to connecting and aggregating smart energy devices behind-the-meter at scale. Moderators Jen Szaro Vice President, Research, Smart Electric Power Alliance 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM Performance Based Ratemaking: Metrics to Maximize your Market Regulatory Innovation 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM Room 1 States are working to implement performance-based ratemaking (PBR) in consultation with regulatory commissions and utilities. How can PBR affect your business? Speakers will provide insights on PBR, investigating options beyond the traditional rate of return to incentivize growth. Additionally, our panel will share their opinions on how PBR can align utility incentives with clean energy goals. Moderators Richard Farinas Research Manager, Smart Electric Power Alliance 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM Enlisting Third Parties and Customers to Develop Win-Win Microgrid Solutions Utility Business Models 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM Room 3 Utility customers are asking about microgrid solutions to increase resilience and reliability. Understanding the goals and objectives is critical to building the best solution for each application. Is there a preference or mandate for renewables? What is their preferred operation scheme? This session will introduce a framework to address these questions, and describe real-world examples. Moderators Jared Leader Manager, Industry Strategy, Smart Electric Power Alliance 12:30 PM - 1:30 PM Lunch with Solution Providers Conference Event 12:30 PM - 1:30 PM Interconnection Lounge 1:30 PM - 2:25 PM Fleet Electrification and Load Optimization Transportation Electrification 1:30 PM - 2:25 PM Room 3 EV adoption is expected to accelerate quickly, especially in fleet environments. Charging infrastructure will need to keep pace, and utilities are essential to EV infrastructure planning and deployment. This session will outline how to best meet the needs of fleet customers while minimizing EV infrastructure challenges. It will also address improving power delivery schedules and reducing installation costs, incorporating utility distribution planning tools, providing customer planning tools, and developing load management strategies. Moderators Erika Myers Principal, Transportation Electrification, Smart Electric Power Alliance 1:30 PM - 2:25 PM Integrated System Planning, Modeling and Powerflow Grid Integration 1:30 PM - 2:25 PM Room 1 Interactions between distribution and transmission systems are increasing. Integrated distribution system planning needs to assess necessary physical and operational changes to the electric grid to enable safe, reliable, and affordable service. Utility experts will get down to the nitty gritty of the challenges and potential solutions to planning and modeling a dynamic system. Moderators Chris Schroeder Vice President, Strategic Solutions, Smart Electric Power Alliance 1:30 PM - 2:25 PM Rate Design for a DER-based World Regulatory Innovation 1:30 PM - 2:25 PM Room 2 Rate design is complex and influences consumption and investment decisions. When done effectively and collaboratively, it creates transparency and opportunity for DER stakeholders. This session will investigate innovative approaches to rate design that maximize the deployment of DERs while allowing utilities to recover a rate of return needed to maintain a system that provides safe, reliable, and affordable power. 2:35 PM - 3:30 PM Engaging Stakeholders in Developing Utility Grid Modernization Plans Regulatory Innovation 2:35 PM - 3:30 PM Room 1 Grid modernization is driven by customer demand for clean energy and utilities' responsibility to protect reliability. Engaging stakeholders to understand their needs is an important early step in establishing grid modernization objectives. This session will review how utility investments are made, cover stakeholder engagement best practices, discuss when and at what level of granularity information should be shared with stakeholders, and incorporate key takeaways from existing processes. Moderators Janet Gail Besser Managing Director, Utility Business Models and Regulatory Innovation, Utility Business Innovation and Regulatory Innovation 2:35 PM - 3:30 PM Energy Storage Business Models for Investor Owned Utilities Utility Business Models 2:35 PM - 3:30 PM Room 2 This panel discussion will investigate storage market trends for investor owned utilities. Topics include: aggregation of residential units for grid services and peak shaving, applications of grid-controlled storage units including metering and resilience, IRP and DRP best practices, regional policy updates, value streams, defining the stack including capacity and grid services, pricing indicators and signaling Moderators Robert Tucker Director, Industry Strategy, Smart Electric Power Alliance 2:35 PM - 3:30 PM Energy Storage Business Models for Public Power Utility Business Models 2:35 PM - 3:30 PM Room 3 This panel discussion will investigate storage trends for public power and member-owned utilities. Topics include: Aggregation of residential units for grid services and peak shaving, Valuing behind the meter energy storage, applications of grid controlled storage units including metering and resilience, IRP and DRP best practices, regional policy updates, value streams, defining the stack including capacity and grid services, pricing indicators and signaling Moderators Kate Strickland Manager, Utility & Regulatory Strategy, Smart Electric Power Alliance 3:30 PM - 4:00 PM Break with Solution Providers Conference Event 3:30 PM - 4:00 PM Interconnection Lounge 4:00 PM - 5:30 PM Human Factors: Utility Services for Customer-Controlled Home Energy Solutions Grid Integration 4:00 PM - 5:30 PM Room 1 Successful DER programs are a big win for everyone involved, but what's the trick to getting customers to change behavior with their own devices, and what role does human factors engineering play? How can utilities create better customer experiences to benefit a clean and modern grid? This best practice-based session will explore successful utility case studies to understand why they are successful, and what human factors engineering and effective financial evaluation can teach us about building successful programs. Moderators Andrew Jerdonek Senior Director, Programming, Smart Electric Power Alliance 4:00 PM - 5:30 PM Billing System of the "Future" for the "Utility of the Future" Grid Integration 4:00 PM - 5:30 PM Room 2 What's the trick to future proofing billing systems with the flexibility to roll out new programs in a changing environment? 4:00 PM - 5:30 PM Local Generation: Update on Community Solar throughout the Southeast Utility Business Models 4:00 PM - 5:30 PM Room 3 Community solar projects have been popular in the Northeast and Midwest. Southeast utilities are exploring the potential benefits for customers who want solar energy but have limited ability to access it. Speakers will share their experiences, insights and best practices for program implementation and managing subscribers. Moderators Leigh Yeatts Manager, Programming, Smart Electric Power Alliance 6:30 PM - 9:30 PM Close the Circuit Party at NASCAR Hall of Fame Conference Event 6:30 PM - 9:30 PM NASCAR Hall of Fame Celebrate all of the exceptional work that you and your peers are doing to facilitate the electric power industry's smart transition to a clean and modern energy future. Join SEPA as we take over the NASCAR Hall of Fame, just a block away from the conference hotel. The event will feature recent models of electric vehicles on display, local food and drinks and all of the interactive exhibits that make the Hall so fun. Wednesday 5.6 7:30 AM - 1:00 PM Registration Conference Event 7:30 AM - 1:00 PM 8:00 AM - 8:50 AM Breakfast with Solution Providers Conference Event 8:00 AM - 8:50 AM Interconnection Lounge 9:00 AM - 11:00 AM Solution Labs: included with your registration Conference Event 9:00 AM - 11:00 AM These intimate, interactive learning sessions focus on developing answers to DER-related utility challenges with your peers 11:00 AM - 11:30 AM Break with Solution Providers Conference Event 11:00 AM - 11:30 AM Interconnection Lounge 11:30 AM - 12:30pm Innovation: Transactive Energy, and beyond! Grid Integration 11:30 AM - 12:30pm Room 3 As utilities develop strategies to accommodate increased DER penetration, new technologies, and changing customer expectations, transactive techniques can help improve resilience and reliability while providing economic incentives to market participants. These transactions between utilities and their customers could help open market access and encourage more participation. Hear from experts who will give their insight into the benefits of transactive energy systems, the hurdles in developing them, and the evolving role of distribution utilities in their implementation. Moderators Aaron Smallwood Vice President, Industry Solutions, Smart Electric Power Alliance 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM EV Rate Design Transportation Electrification 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM Room 3 Electric vehicle (EV) adoption is going to increase. Without encouraging off-peak residential and commercial charging, these EVs could lead to costly distribution system impacts and infrastructure upgrades. EV-specific time-varying rates - a form of passive managed charging - can successfully incentivize customers to charge during off-peak hours and at times that increase the value of renewable energy assets. This session will provide insights into current EV time-varying rates, utility motivations for implementing EV rates, consumer preferences, and how to create successful programs that result in high enrollment and participation. 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM DER Integration: Challenges, Opportunities, and the Future of Grid Design Grid Integration 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM Room 2 DERs are rapidly changing the way the grid is managed. This session will investigate the rapid adoption of these technologies and the effects they have on overall utility performance both at the circuit level and in different applications from high density feeders to rural circuits. Our panel of experts will discuss emerging regulatory and technological advances including cluster studies, performance metrics and the proliferation of dispatchable smart inverters. Moderators Ben Ealey Principal, Grid Integration, Smart Electric Power Alliance 12:30 PM - 1:45 PM The Future of Utility Strategy: Beneficial Electrification, Distributed Energy and Transportation Conference Event 12:30 PM - 1:45 PM Interconnection Lounge Lunch will be served during this session. Electric utilities are being challenged to meet new, incremental performance metrics driven by shifting customer, market, and regulatory actions, without sacrificing the demands for a safe, affordable, and reliable energy system. What effect is this having on utilities' business models, and how are they designing their systems to accommodate increased variability?