Utilities And Transmission




How a simple fix could double the size of the U.S. electricity grid

By Shannon Osaka 05/28/24
There is one big thing holding the United States back from a pollution-free electricity grid running on wind, solar and battery power: not enough power lines.
Read more

Utility plans another gas-fired power plant for North Dakota

By Jeff Beach 05/16/24
Basin Electric Cooperative plans to build another natural gas-fired power generation facility in North Dakota, a top company official said Wednesday.
Read more

Gas Utility Misadventures in Neighborhood Electrification

By Emily Pontecorvo 05/16/24
Natural gas utilities spend hundreds of millions of dollars each year on pipelines and related infrastructure — costs they typically recoup from ratepayers over the course of decades. In the eyes of clean energy advocates,…
Read more

US overhauls electric grid to make way for more renewables

By Valerie Volcovici 05/14/24
The U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on Monday approved the first major electric transmission policy update in over a decade that aims to speed up new interregional lines to move more clean energy to meet…
Read more

FERC Takes on Long-Term Planning with Historic Transmission Rule

FERC acted today to ensure the transmission grid can meet the nation’s growing demand for reliable electricity with a new rule that outlines how to plan and pay for facilities that regions of the country…
Read more

America’s Power Line Problems Just Got a FERC Fix

By Matthew Zeitlin 05/13/24
On the two ends of the energy transition, public policy is working to encourage more non-carbon-emitting electricity generation (think wind, solar, and batteries) and convert what was once powered by combustion in electric power (think…
Read more

Vermont is on the cusp of mandating 100% clean electricity by 2035

By Akielly Hu 05/10/24
The state’s Senate approved the measure this week, putting Vermont on track to be among the first states to fully decarbonize its power grid.
Read more

How the North American grid needs to change for an electric future

By Amanda D. Smith 05/08/24
Power companies are finding that these demands are growing faster than they planned, making it difficult for power system operators to balance the electrical power being produced with the demand needed in real time.
Read more

How Bad Is A.I. for the Climate?

By Andrew Ross Sorkin and Others 05/06/24
The boom in artificial intelligence has minted billions in (paper) wealth for tech giants like Microsoft and Amazon. But there’s an overlooked set of winners as well: utilities and energy companies. The power demands of…
Read more

ISO-NE anticipates 17% rise in annual energy use by 2033, led by EVs and heating

By Robert Walton 05/06/24
The region has typically seen grid demand peak during the summer, but that may change across the next 10 years, says a new capacity and demand report from the New England ISO.
Read more

Biden Finalizes Plan To Overhaul Dirty Power Grid And Reduce Blackouts

By Alexander C. Kaufman 04/25/24
The Biden administration rolled out its plan Thursday to overhaul the United States’ aging patchwork of fossil-fueled electrical grids, finishing work on a suite of regulations designed to rein in rising utility bills and stem…
Read more

The New EPA Power Plant Rules Are Out — and Could Change the Calculus for Gas

By Emily Pontecorvo 04/25/24
Utilities all over the country have proposed to build a slew of new natural gas-fired power plants in recent months, citing an anticipated surge in electricity demand from data centers, manufacturing, and electric vehicles. But…
Read more


The White House Also Has Some Transmission News

By Matthew Zeitlin   04/25/24  
The Environmental Protection Agency’s power plant rules were not the only big energy policy announcement from the Biden administration Thursday. The White House also announced a bevy of initiatives and projects meant to bolster infrastructure…
Read more

Utility-Caused Wildfires Are Becoming a National Problem

By Ivan Penn   03/22/24  
After a utility pole fell and ignited a wildfire, Frank King and his family raced to escape as electrical transformers exploded around their homes near Oregon’s coast. A bright red glow was visible in the…
Read more

Grid-Enhancing ‘Magic Balls’ to Get a Major Test in Minnesota

By Dan Gearino   03/21/24  
A sensor about the size of a bowling ball can measure the real-time temperature of a transmission line. With this information, the operator can safely increase the level of power flowing through the line.
Read more

DOE invests $44m to enhance US electrical grid with clean energy technologies

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has unveiled a strategic initiative aimed at bolstering the nation’s electrical grid with clean energy solutions.
Read more

A New Surge in Power Use Is Threatening U.S. Climate Goals

By Brad Plumer and Nadja Popovich   03/14/24  
Something unusual is happening in America. Demand for electricity, which has stayed largely flat for two decades, has begun to surge. Over the past year, electric utilities have nearly doubled their forecasts of how much…
Read more

Column: Are utility companies heroes or villains of the climate change saga?

By Sammy Roth   03/07/24  
“You either die a hero or you live long enough to see yourself become the villain.” So says Aaron Eckhart’s Harvey Dent in the epic 2008 film “The Dark Knight.” It’s an apt analysis of…
Read more

Why EPA can cut carbon pollution from power plants without sacrificing grid reliability

By Dena Adler and Jennifer Danis   03/07/24  
Roughly 1,800 regulators and other energy professionals gathered for the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners’ Winter Policy Summit last week where state and federal regulators had a lot to say about the clean energy…
Read more

Amid explosive demand, America is running out of power

By Evan Halper   03/07/24  
Vast swaths of the United States are at risk of running short of power as electricity-hungry data centers and clean-technology factories proliferate around the country, leaving utilities and regulators grasping for credible plans to expand…
Read more

Large New Hampshire solar projects face delays trying to connect to power grid

By Sarah Shemkus   03/06/24  
When conveyor belt manufacturer Wire Belt opened its new facility in Bedford, N.H., last fall, the company looked forward to saving money and fighting climate change with a 2,400-panel solar array installed on the roof.
Read more

Even Warren Buffett Thinks the Era of Private Utilities Is Over

By Robinson Meyer   02/27/24  
Warren Buffet, the chairman of Berkshire Hathaway and investing folk hero, has long had a rule for picking which companies to invest in.
Read more

Energy companies tap AI to detect defects in an aging grid

By Peter Behr   02/21/24  
A helicopter loaded with cameras and sensors sweeps over a utility’s high-voltage transmission line in the southeastern United States. High-resolution cameras record images of cables, connections and towers. Artificial intelligence tools search for cracks and…
Read more

Democratic bill would tie Texas to the national grid

By Rebekah Alvey   02/15/24  
On the third anniversary of one of Texas' largest grid failures, Democrats have introduced a bill to connect the state to the national grid to address reliability concerns.
Read more

State lawmakers want to peel back the curtain at the nation’s biggest electrical grid operator

By Robert Zullo   02/08/24  
Last year, Del. Lorig Charkoudian (D-Montgomery) was on her own when she filed legislation seeking to force her state’s utilities to reveal votes at the grid operator that coordinates the flow of electricity for 65…
Read more

CU Boulder finds U.S. utilities on track to hit 100% renewable energy by 2060

By Olivia Doak   02/06/24  
A University of Colorado Boulder study found that utility companies nationwide are moving faster toward decarbonizing than state mandates, with companies leading the energy transition without waiting for policy to catch up.
Read more

Biden, Congress struggle to overcome transmission lag

By James Osborne   02/05/24  
President Joe Biden came into office three years ago calling for a historic expansion of the nation’s power grid to allow the movement of electricity from wind farms in Texas to cities in the east…
Read more

9 US power sector trends to watch in 2024

By Robert Walton and others   01/10/24  
The U.S. clean energy transition is expected to accelerate this year, buoyed by recent policy and other actions, but transmission and financing are among its challenges. The following is a snapshot of some of the…
Read more

Could 2024 be a breakout year for the transmission grid?

By Jeff St. John   01/03/24  
It’s hard to solve a challenge as sprawling and complex as doubling or tripling the scale of the transmission grids across the U.S. in a little over a decade. But the country’s climate and clean…
Read more

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

By Laura Sherman   12/14/23  
The biggest energy policy event in the Midwest this year came on Nov. 28 when Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed a package of bills into law that will quadruple Michigan’s renewable energy standard, move to…
Read more

Eversource left the American Gas Association. These other “climate-friendly” utilities haven’t

By Emily Atkin   08/10/23  
If we want to achieve real climate action in the United States, we have to do something about trade associations. Over the last two decades, trade associations for fossil fuels and other industries have spent…
Read more