Interconnection Writ Large: Non-Technical Solutions to Connecting Renewables, Storage, and the Grid

Session: Rapid-Fire Introductions by Poster PresentersDate: Wednesday, October 16, 2019 / 11:35AM - 12:05PM PDTTags: Poster / Performance, Reliability and Technological Advancements

Energy generation, transmission, distribution, storage, and consumption are undergoing a revolution in the US. For example, distributed energy resources (DER), batteries, value stacking, smart grids and appliances, microgrids, and widely ranging incentives and pricing schemes are just some of the industry changes that are developing faster than industry, consumers, and regulators can keep up. 

Interconnection is a newer albeit established industry process that is meeting these new challenges industry head-on, e.g. the recent successful revision of IEEE Std 1547 for DER Interconnection. This presentation puts forth a viewpoint that the greater challenge now is not technical, since technical capabilities are expanding rapidly. Instead, it is developing and “Interconnecting:” the social, economic, regulatory, and policy-related infrastructure and environments to keep up with the rapidly evolving technical advances. Technical challenges certainly remain, and technical experts are focused on them. But there are non-technical advances that can help advance the industry as a whole.

We offer some specific solutions, and we also outline general pathways to ensure that the human side of Interconnection evolves along with the technical side of Interconnection.  The pathways put forward in this presentation are a first step for further action in support of legislative and regulatory innovations, broadening stakeholder engagement, and widening stakeholder participation across non traditional market boundaries, e.g. transportation electrification and the power industry.