MIT Energy Initiative to release comprehensive “Utility of the Future” report at National Press Club

mitei-logo-fullReport on evolving electric power sector calls for regulatory, policy, and market transformations to realize potential of distributed energy technologies

(Washington, D.C.) : On Thursday, December 15, the MIT Energy Initiative (MITEI) will release a new report on the future of the electric power sector—“The Utility of the Future.” Developed through a multi-year research study, the report provides a framework for proactive regulatory, policy, and market reforms designed to enable the efficient evolution of power systems over the next decade and beyond.

As distributed energy technologies such as solar and wind power, energy storage, and power electronics and control devices are rapidly being deployed in the global shift toward a low-carbon energy future, there are opportunities for integrating these technologies into the system where they will be most cost-effective and impactful. New information and communications technologies are also enabling more flexible and efficient consumption of electricity. In the midst of these changes, there are also great risks to continuing business as usual. Tomorrow’s electric power systems will need to facilitate the integration of all resources—whether distributed or centralized—that contribute to the efficient provision of electricity services and other public objectives. “The Utility of the Future” study report serves as a toolkit to help electric power sector stakeholders navigate these unfolding changes and proactively develop a more robust, efficient system for the future.

The report release event at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., will begin with a 12:30 PM lunch followed by remarks at 1:00 PM. Speakers will include MITEI Director Robert C. Armstrong; study principal investigator Ignacio Pérez-Arriaga, an MIT visiting professor and professor of electrical engineering at IIT-Comillas; and study executive director Raanan Miller of MITEI. Speakers will discuss the study’s findings and recommendations, followed by a panel with remarks from members of the research team who authored the study.

Study recommendations relate to reforms in pricing of electricity services, regulation of distribution networks, and market design to respond to the evolving sector and achieve substantial cost savings for consumers and industry.

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