Synapse conducted an analysis of the projected costs and benefits of BGE’s proposed Smart Grid Initiative as well as the proposed allocation of Initiative costs among rate classes and the design of the proposed Smart Grid Charge.
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Testimony Exhibits Regarding Baltimore Gas and Electric Company Smart Grid Initiative
Supplemental Direct Testimony Regarding Baltimore Gas and Electric Company Smart Grid Initiative
Reply Testimony Regarding Baltimore Gas and Electric Company Smart Grid Initiative
For the Maryland Office of People's Counsel, Synapse analyzed the projected costs and benefits of the AMI proposed by PEPCO MD and Delmarva MD respectively, as well as the rate and bill impacts of those proposals.
Reply Testimony Regarding the Advanced Meter Infrastructure Plans of Potomac Electric Power Company and Delmarva Power and Light Company
Supplemental Testimony Regarding the Advanced Meter Infrastructure Plans of Potomac Electric Power Company and Delmarva Power and Light Company
Synapse analyzed a pilot gas rate decoupling mechanism, a Conservation Enabling Rider, proposed by Centerpoint Energy.
Rebuttal Testimony Regarding a Review of a Proposed Conservation Enabling Rider
The Maine Office of Public Advocate retained Synapse to help them evaluate whether it would be in the public interest for Maine to establish a Smart Grid Coordinator pursuant to the Maine Smart Grid Policy Act. The joint testimony filed by Synapse and Martin Roth Cohen and Associates in that proceeding concluded that the concept of establishing a Smart Grid Coordinator for a sub-set of smart grid functions was sufficiently in the public interest to justify moving to Phase II of the proceeding.
Synapse analyzed the policy and ratemaking implications of Allegheny Power and the FirstEnergy Companies filings, the level of projected benefits of the proposed Smart Meter Plans relative to their projected costs, the uncertainty associated with those benefits, and the allocation and rate design issues underlying the cost recovery proposals.
Supplemental Direct Testimony Regarding Allegheny Power Smart Meter Technology Plan
Surrebuttal Testimony Regarding Allegheny Power Smart Meter Technology Plan
Direct Testimony Regarding FirstEnergy Smart Meter Technology Plan
Surrebuttal Testimony Regarding FirstEnergy Smart Meter Technology Plan
Rick Hornby presented “Transitions to Smart Grid, a.k.a. Modernizing Distribution Systems: Major Factors Affecting Cost Effectiveness” at the NASUCA Annual Conference on November 16, 2010. The presentation assumes that transitions to “smarter” distribution systems should be considered part of each utility’s normal capital expenditures and poses the question: At what pace, and cost, is it reasonable for U.S. electric utilities to make those investments?
Synapse developed a competitive mechanism for the purchase of water efficiency resources in the Metropolitan Water District service territory of southern California. The project entailed writing a report for NRDC that described the competitive mechanism and how it would function. Synapse also provided explanations for the mechanism to various stakeholder groups, soliciting feedback, and modifying the recommendations.
For the Arkansas Public Service Commission, Synapse prepared a whitepaper describing ratemaking mechanisms that U.S. electric utilities have implemented to align their financial incentives with the pursuit of energy efficiency.
Chris James presented “An Integrated Policy Approach to Managing Air Quality and Climate Change” before the Ontario Ministry of Environment on May 12, 2009. He discussed reasons for an integrated planning approach; structural, institutional, and technical challenges; and examples of successful policies.
Synapse performed analyses of proposed decoupling polices and pilot programs.
Synapse analyzed Duke Energy Ohio's proposed "Save-a-Watt" program, which would institute financial incentives program for demand-side management.
Synapse performed an analysis of major concerns for residential customers regarding the cost-effectiveness of potential utility investments in Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI).
Synapse analyzed Santee Cooper's 2008 resource planning, including its decision to build two Pee Dee River coal-fired generating plants. The findings of the analysis are presented in a final report that suggests that the 2008 plan needed to be revised to avoid significant financial risks to ratepayers.
An Assessment of Santee Cooper 2008 Resource Planning
NRDC commissioned Synapse to determine the potential risks and uncertainties to Old Dominion Electric Cooperative's consumer-members posed by the construction of a the proposed Cypress Creek Power Station.
Synapse provided litigation support to CLF in evaluating Central Vermont Public Service’s proposed alternative regulation plan.
Synapse provided expert analysis and testimony in support of a proposed wind farm to be located in Vermont. Our analysis showed that the project will provide needed power, will satisfy renewable energy requirements in the state and the broader region, and provide a hedge against fuel and emissions costs for Vermont ratepayers.
The Deerfield Wind Project - Assessment of the Need for Power and the Economic and Environmental Attributes of the Project
Synapse provided CSI with slides relating to the electricity sector and climate change.
Synapse was hired by the AARP to assist in the development of a policy position for protecting vulnerable consumers in the face of likely federal greenhouse gas regulations. Specific tasks included preparation of research reports on various aspects of climate policy and their likely impact on consumers; reviews of ways in which these impacts can be mitigated; presentation of an overview of climate policy issues for AARP personnel, and assisting AARP in drafting of its policy positions in this area.
In “Co-Benefits Experience and Lessons from the U.S. Electric Sector,” published in Pollution Atmosphérique, Synapse authors discuss the challenge of achieving co-benefits (or secondary benefits from a program or regulation with a different target, e.g., reducing CO2 with programs targeting SO2 or NOX) in emissions regulation in the U.S.
Synapse prepared comments for the AARP to be submitted to the Connecticut Energy Advisory Board in February 2008.
Synapse submitted comments in response to the Notice of Intent (NOI) published by the U.S. Department of Energy regarding its plan to issue a competitive Funding Opportunity Announcement for grant applications under the Smart Grid Investment Grant Program. Comments addressed two elements of the NOI: the criteria for evaluating grant applications and the anticipated maximum levels of grants.
For the U.S. EPA, Synapse researched and analyzed concerns that consumer organizations have raised regarding energy efficiency programs in general and ratepayer funded efficiency programs in particular. Project completed in February 2009.
Synapse was hired to review plans proposed by the local distribution company (PEPCO) to provide energy efficiency and demand response programs to consumers in the District of Columbia. Prior to any significant work on this project, the DC Commission approved a proposal for a stand-alone efficiency utility. Due to this decision, our client effectively abandoned its analysis of PEPCO’s programs and ended the contract.
The Sierra Club and the Oklahoma Sustainability Network retained Synapse to provide support in a state Commission rulemaking on demand-side management (DSM) by electric utilities. Synapse provided assistance in drafting comments, attended workshops and negotiation meetings, and advised on strategy and economic impacts. The Oklahoma Corporation Commission adopted a new DSM rule as a result of this proceeding.
Synapse produced a report analyzing how electricity markets and regional economies would be affected by restrictions on mountaintop/valley fill coal mining in Central Appalachia. The report ultimately finds that alternative sources of electricity and alternative sources of coal are economic and available for serving electric load in the eastern U.S.
Synapse assisted the Nova Scotia Utility and Review Board with a variety of rate case issues including electric load forecasting, demand-side management, and power plant depreciation. Project completed in February 2009.
On behalf of Southern Alliance for Clean Energy, Synapse reviewed the Duke Energy Save-A-Watt Energy Efficiency Plan Proposal. The review is focused on Duke Energy's proposed programs and the proposed cost recovery mechanism. Also, joint intervenor comments on a Rulemaking Proceeding have been formally filed by the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy, Environmental Defense and the Southern Environmental Law Center with the North Carolina Public Utilities Commission. Concurrently, communications consisting of feedback and recommendations on the Save-A-Watt proposal occurred with Duke Energy.
Progress Energy Proposed Distribution System Demand Response Program
Testimony Regarding Application of Progress Energy for the Establishment of Procedures for DSM/EE Programs
Surrebuttal Testimony of Rick Hornby Regarding Duke Energy Carolinas Save-A-Watt Programs
The Cape Light Compact contracted for a custom energy efficiency tracking system that will enable to them to better track all aspects of their energy efficiency program installations and improve customer service. Synapse assisted The Cape Light Compact in ensuring that all critical system requirements have been met by the database provider.
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