EnerNOC LAUNCHES GREEN BUTTON INITIATIVE OPEN DATA PROJECT

EnerNOC LAUNCHES GREEN BUTTON INITIATIVE OPEN DATA PROJECT

EnerNOC Inc., a provider of cloud-based energy management software, announced its newest EnerNOC Open project, Open Data. As part of its participation in the Green Button Initiative and to encourage open source collaboration that advances energy management innovation, the company has scrubbed and anonymized one year of granular energy data from 100 large buildings.

Developers and engineers can access the data for noncommercial purposes such as research, integration testing and hackathons.

Green Button is an energy industry initiative that responds to a White House call to action to provide customers with easy access to their energy use data in a simple format. The release of EnerNOC’s Open Data project is timed with the start of the EnerNOC-sponsored Boston CleanWeb Hackathon and Data Jam that began April 5 that brings together entrepreneurs and developers to tackle problems at the intersection of energy, sustainability and the Internet. The hackathon is a three-day sprint to build prototype applications and business ideas. The data jam is a 90-day marathon culminating June 26 that will result in production-ready products and fledgling businesses.

EnerNOC maintains a repository that includes more than 50 billion energy readings from the thousands of commercial and industrial sites on its platform worldwide and has invested more than $160 million in its technology and network infrastructure.

Details on EnerNOC’s Green Button initiative participation are available at http://open.enernoc.com. For Green Button information, go to http://green buttondata.org.


GDF SUEZ ENERGY RESOURCES AGREEMENT WITH VIRIDITY ENERGY STRENGTHENS DEMAND RESPONSE CAPABILITIES

GDF SUEZ ENERGY RESOURCES AGREEMENT WITH VIRIDITY ENERGY STRENGTHENS DEMAND RESPONSE CAPABILITIES

GDF Suez Energy Resources NA, one of the country’s largest competitive retail electricity providers to commercial, industrial and institutional customers, announced an agreement with Viridity Energy to provide comprehensive, customized demand response solutions.

Through this agreement, large energy users will have access to customized decision-making tools that align operations with load-management strategies and provide opportunities to reduce energy-related costs. The market knowledge and supply expertise of GDF Suez Energy Resources combined with the customer load-optimization capabilities of Viridity Energy will give buyers the potential to mitigate peak energy costs and decrease capital expenditures.

“Using electricity at the right time can really make a difference in a company’s bottom line, particularly for large energy users,” said David Coffman, vice president of marketing for GDF Suez Energy Resources. “By leveraging our and Viridity’s capabilities, we plan to bring big benefits to these commercial and industrial customers through practical, economic energy management strategies customized for them.”

Eric Alam, senior vice president of western region sales at Viridity Energy, said GDF Suez Energy Resources is a strong retail electricity provider that understands the value of load flexibility and how it can be monetized for its customers.

“Viridity Energy specializes in providing the tools necessary to unlock that value, and together we bring a new approach to overall energy management through the convergence of supply and demand-side strategies that lowers energy costs in a powerful way,” Alam said.

GDF Suez Energy Resources will be a key strategic advisor to Viridity Energy in evaluating and analyzing customer load and behavior for year-round demand response events. The company serves commercial, industrial and institutional customers in 12 markets: Delaware, Texas, Massachusetts, Maine, Maryland, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Connecticut, Ohio and Washington, D.C. The company serves some 80,000 accounts for customers with a peak demand ranging from 50 KW to more than 200 MW, with an estimated peak load totaling nearly 10,000 MW.

Viridity Energy will use the retail electricity supplier’s supply and trading capabilities to monetize actionable load opportunities for customers. Both companies will take part in a pilot project that targets several large commercial and industrial power users that use standby generation, battery storage and automated control and measurement technology.


PG&E EMPLOYEES VOLUNTEER DURING APRIL

Pacific Gas and Electric Co. (PG&E) in April launched its first Month of Service program, which featured more than 100 employee volunteer projects throughout Northern and Central California as part of National Volunteer Month.

PG&E partnered with HandsOn Network and Points of Light, a leading volunteer organization, on the projects. PG&E CEO Tony Earley officially launched the program April 4 with nearly 80 employee volunteers at Candlestick Point State Recreation Area in San Francisco. Volunteers removed graffiti, cleaned the shoreline, planted native vegetation and conducted other park renovations.

“For more than a quarter of a century, one of the most significant ways we have served our communities is through our volunteer program,” said Ezra Garrett, PG&E vice president and chief sustainability officer. “Last year alone, PG&Eers gave more than 41,000 volunteer hours to communities throughout our service area. And each year, these numbers continue to grow as our employees generously give their time to support our neighbors in need.”

Anchored by PG&E’s annual Earth Day clean-up and restoration projects in partnership with the California State Parks Foundation, the Month of Service also featured other volunteer activities that cater to the broad range of employee interests. Volunteer activities included restoration of state parks, neighborhood emergency response training, stuffing backpacks for students, building playgrounds and installing solar panels on Habitat for Humanity homes.

About Points of Light

Points of Light, the largest organization in the world dedicated to volunteer service, mobilizes millions of people to take action that is changing the world. Through affiliates in 250 cities and partnerships with thousands of nonprofits and corporations, Points of Light engages more than 4 million volunteers in 30 million hours of service each year. It brings the power of people to bear where it matters most. For more information, visit http://pointsoflight.org.

About HandsOn Network

The volunteer-activation division of Points of Light Institute, HandsOn Network, includes 250 community action centers that deliver 30 million hours of volunteer service each year and extend to 16 countries around the world. These centers focus on helping people plug into volunteer opportunities in their local communities, partnering with more than 70,000 corporate, faith and nonprofit organizations to manage volunteer resources, and developing the leadership capacity of volunteers. Annually, the network delivers volunteer service valued at $626 million. For more information, visit http://handsonnetwork.org.


EYE ON THE WORLD

1,000 Ontario homes to be equipped with Energate smart grid technology

Energate Inc., North America’s leading provider of consumer demand response and home energy management solutions for utilities and their customers, announced the rollout of its Consumer Engagement for the Smart Grid (CESG) program.

Qualified Ontario consumers can opt into the program via participating local distribution companies (LDCs) or directly through Energate online to receive a fully funded Energate Foundation smart thermostat and home energy gateway, with additional innovations to follow. The foundation delivers vital energy information and control based on time-of-use pricing with easy to use options to help save on energy costs while delivering value to the province’s smart grid and demand response goals.

The objective of the $7.8 million CESG project is to stimulate consumers’ engagement in home energy management by leveraging and extending the smart grid into homes. As part of the CESG program, participants will receive real-time usage data via Energate’s Foundation, which provides whole-house energy consumption information along with a fully programmable smart thermostat. Foundation keeps track of savings over a 30-day period and helps users better manage their energy costs through multiple complementary consumer-friendly options such as home energy dashboards and mobile applications. It also can be set up to display the past 24 hours of electricity consumption, as well as seven-day averages to provide trending feedback to consumers. As a result, consumers can monitor usage and reduce or shift consumption from peak to nonpeak periods based on time-of-use rates.

Qualified Ontario homeowners who deploy Foundation also will be able to participate in Phases 2 and 3 of the CESG project that provide innovations that could include advanced mobile apps, more advanced home energy management features, and extended monitoring and control of other energy-using appliances. Participants will provide feedback to Energate, Ontario’s Ministry of Energy and the LDCs on the value of these advanced technologies in achieving their personal goals and preferences.

“PowerStream is committed to customer satisfaction,” said Brian Bentz, president and CEO of PowerStream. “The program with Energate allows us to test advanced technologies with our customers to better understand how they view this smart grid opportunity.”

Up to 1,000 homes in Ontario will be equipped with these advanced technologies as part of the CESG demonstration and feedback program. Homeowners can indicate their interest by reviewing the qualifications and signing up at http://energateinc.com/cesg. Participants will be selected based on qualification criteria, regional program limits and the terms of a participant agreement.

Participating LDCs include Cambridge & North Dumfries Hydro, Kitchener-Wilmot Hydro, Waterloo North Hydro, Hydro One, Hydro Ottawa, Peterborough Utilities, PowerStream and Veridian Connections. Additional LDCs also may propose to participate in the project.


EASLEY COMBINED UTILITIES COMMISSIONS NEW SCADA SYSTEM

EASLEY COMBINED UTILITIES COMMISSIONS NEW SCADA SYSTEM

Easley Combined Utilities, a citizen-created, not-for-profit, locally owned and controlled utility in South Carolina, has commissioned a new supervisory control and data acquisition system from Survalent Technology, a provider of smart grid solutions for control rooms.

The Easley City Water and Light Plant was created in 1911, and the city’s first electricity supply was generated in 1912 to operate pumps at the water treatment plant. It is a member of ElectriCities of North Carolina (ECNC), Piedmont Municipal Power Agency (PMPA) and South Carolina Association of Municipal Electric Association (SCAMPS).

The new system features Survalent’s highly available, open-architecture system based on Windows Server. It includes several of Survalent’s open system applications, including: WorldView, SCADA Explorer, Command Sequence, Event Data Recording, IED Wizard and Control Panel, SCADA Add-In, Master/Slave Alarm Suppression, Remote Alarm Annunciation, Load Curtailment, Virtual RTU, System Configuration Status, MultiSpeak and Dynamic Voltage Reduction.


Report: BRICS smart grid communications market to reach $9.5B by 2020

Report: BRICS smart grid communications market to reach $9.5B by 2020

The smart grid communications market among BRICS countries—Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa—will reach $9.5 billion by 2020, according to the Zpryme report “Smart Grid Communications: The BRICS Outlook.”

The report states the BRICS smart grid communications market will experience rapid growth during the next eight years, which Zpryme expects to follow three distinct phases:

1. The deployment of smart meters to establish a two-way communications system between utilities and subscribers;
2. The addition of new sensors and other devices at key junctures of the network to help utilities develop value-added services to leverage their smart grid infrastructure; and
3. The development of new services and software to optimize smart meter deployments and the overall grid.

Countries such as Russia and Brazil have major events such as the World Cup and Olympics as key drivers of overall electrical infrastructure investments. China, on the other hand, must develop an advanced grid that can support the rapid expansion of its economy. Alternatively, South Africa and India are determined to develop and provide reliable power to all their citizens. Thus, South Africa and India see the smart grid as a key pillar of their electrical upgrade plans.

In the report, Zpryme examines the smart grid communications market in Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. In addition, the report highlights 46 key vendors that serve the communications market.

Several network technologies can be used for communications in the transmission, distribution and customer domains in the smart grid, but none suits all the applications. An integrated, two-way communications and networking platform is necessary for the smart grid. Methods of providing these communications include cellular communications, power line communications, broadband over power lines, ZigBee, radio frequency mesh network, long-term evolution, wireless broadband (4G) and satellite communications, among others.

Smart grid communications infrastructure connects many electric devices and manages the complicated device communications. It is constructed in a hierarchical architecture with interconnected individual subnetworks and each taking responsibility of separate geographical regions. In general, the communication networks include wide-area networks, field-area networks, home-area networks, local-area networks, private networks, public networks, wired and wireless networks.

The Zpryme forecast indicates the BRICS countries will account for 24 percent of the global smart grid communications market in 2012. China will drive the growth of the overall BRICS smart grid communications market, but lucrative opportunities also will develop in Brazil and Russia by 2020. Among the five BRICS countries, India will grow the fastest with a projected compound annual growth rate of 30 percent.

Communications for advanced metering infrastructure, enterprise and operations architecture, and distribution automation will make up the lion’s share of the BRICS market, accounting for 76 percent and 72 percent of the market in 2012 and 2020, respectively. Communications systems that enable customer systems and distributed energy resource integration, however, will see significant gains during this period.

Report site: http://smartgridresearch.org

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