US Electric Industry Report

Change within the electric industry continues to accelerate as new technologies, longstanding reliability mandates and conservation goals push against the confines of aging infrastructure and an often outdated regulatory framework.

Distributed generation (DG), energy storage technologies and the industry’s need for capital to invest in upgrades will require electric utilities to embrace grid modernization and other new business approaches if they are to thrive during this transformative period. Customers increasingly must be engaged to improve service and strengthen long-established relationships in the face of competition.

The 2015 Strategic Directions U.S. Electric Industry Report captures how electric utilities are managing change across all aspects of their enterprise. Key areas discussed include the effect of natural gas prices on the generation market as well as a growing focus on cybersecurity in advance of new requirements set to take effect in early 2016. Regulation is a common thread throughout the report as the industry braces for the impacts of major environmental rules while managing traditional ratepayer concerns.

From a global perspective, the report includes insights on market shifts impacting the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), South Africa and Asia Pacific. Rapid transformation of global markets highlights the need for electric utilities to be resilient and ready for change. This can only occur when the utility and its stakeholders make the conscious decision to be proactive and work together to recognize the potential in new technologies and ways of thinking.

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The Growing Influence of IPPs
The role of independent power producers (IPPs) continues to expand as interest in natural gas power, renewable energy and distributed generation increases. These players are reacting to changing market conditions by diversifying investments to include natural gas and other low carbon strategies. Learn how electric utilities are responding to competition from IPPs. 

Distributed Generation Leading Shift
Electric utility stakeholders are better informed than ever before. At the same time, utilities are grappling with revenue challenges from efficiency mandates and distributed generation.  In response, some utilities are proactively engaging and seeking ways to mitigate emerging challenges. Learn more about how electric utilities are changing their approach to renewable energy integration. 

Asia Perspective: Mining Operators Embrace Renewables
Slumping commodity prices are pressuring mining companies to reduce the cost of doing business. Worldwide, renewable energy has become a viable complementary option for mining operations. Hydropower, wind and solar are gaining new prominence through their incorporation into broader power supply portfolios. Governments are also asking industry to become more self-sufficient. In Indonesia, leaders are urging mining companies to develop their own thermal or renewable power supplies.   

Asia Perspective: Managing Risk is Key to Overcoming Asia’s Electricity Challenges
Asia’s growth continues to create more demand for power, resulting in the need for more project financing particularly in many emerging Southeast Asian nations including Indonesia. As traditional utility players try to keep up with demand, new financiers, developers and sponsors are entering the market. This is calling for a deeper understanding of various risks which would result in more profitable and, therefore, bankable projects.  

EPC Contracts Gaining Ground
Engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contracts are becoming more prevalent for large electric system projects. This approach has a variety of benefits including risk mitigation and speed of delivery. The challenge for electric utilities is choosing the provider that best meets their needs.  Learn more about how utilities are approaching EPC contracting. 

The Electric Utility of the Future
The role of the electric utility is changing. Keeping pace with customer needs, technology and regulatory mandates will require the industry to diverge from traditional business practices. Next generation utilities will proactively embrace change. Learn more about the characteristics of next generation electric utilities. 

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