Can California avert new gas plants with distributed resources? SoCal Ed offers a test case

Utility Dive
By Herman K. Trabish
June 28, 2018

Reg­u­la­tors will soon decide between two paths regard­ing SCE’s pro­posed pilot — one where DER remains sec­ondary to nat­ur­al gas and anoth­er where they move to trans­form the dis­tri­b­u­tion system.

A deci­sion fac­ing Cal­i­for­nia reg­u­la­tors will show how deeply the state is com­mit­ted to the ener­gy tran­si­tion for which Demo­c­rat Gov­er­nor Jer­ry Brown claims nation­al and glob­al leadership.

The deci­sion is whether to approve the sec­ond phase of the South­ern Cal­i­for­nia Edi­son (SCEPre­ferred Resources Pilot (PRP). The PRP would ulti­mate­ly be the largest scale test to date for the propo­si­tion that a port­fo­lio of dis­trib­uted ener­gy resources (DER) can be as reli­able as a nat­ur­al gas plant in a trans­mis­sion-con­strained load pocket.


The SCE pilot is designed to dri­ve “mar­ket trans­for­ma­tion” and that requires “a clear reg­u­la­to­ry path,” accord­ing to Nan­cy Pfund, man­ag­ing part­ner of DBL Investors, one of California’s most impor­tant ven­ture cap­i­tal firms. Not approv­ing this PRP “would send the wrong sig­nal to investors like me who count on con­sis­tent pol­i­cy in mak­ing invest­ment deci­sions,” she told Util­i­ty Dive.

To read the full arti­cle, vis­it Util­i­ty Dive.