The second season of Grid Talk kicks off with a discussion about rebuilding and modernizing Puerto Rico's electric grids after devastating hurricanes. Host Marty Rosenberg talks with David Owens who is the Vice-Chair of the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority. Mr. Owens talks about how his organization is working to use solar energy and microgrids to build a more resilient and reliable energy system.
"A grid for renewable technologies is a grid very distinctly different in many respects from a grid that’s been built around central station facilities, which is traditionally how the Puerto Rican grid has evolved. So, you have to move from the kind of grid that we have today to one that has---that’s more digitized," said Owens.
He also discusses why it's more than just building a new grid.
"This is really about the future of Puerto Rico. This is about bringing jobs back to Puerto Rico, enhancing economic development, re-establishing businesses in Puerto Rico, getting Puerto Ricans employed."
David K. Owens is an accomplished executive with extensive experience in public policies surrounding utility operations, strategic planning, technology development, rate making and regulation. He is recognized as one of the foremost authorities on electric utility issues, industry restructuring, and transformation. His experience in the electricity sector includes leading the Edison Electric Institute’s (EEI’s) efforts over a broad set of issues that affect the future structure of the electric industry and new rules in evolving competitive markets.
He spearheaded efforts to enhance the public policy climate for investments in America’s electric infrastructure with emphasis on the role of new technologies to address climate change, and to enhance energy efficiency through smart buildings, smart appliances, smart meters, and smart electric grids.
Mr. Owens is a graduate of Howard University with a Bachelor and Masters of Engineering degrees. He also has a Masters in Engineering Administration from George Washington University.
With Kenny Mercado, Senior Vice President of Electric Operations, CenterPoint EnergyOct. 16, 2020
“The wholesale market is competitive, and the retail market is competitive, and so many entities can participate and it enables the real evolution of technology to come to the forefront and we make investments across the supply chain.”
With Bob Rowe, President and CEO, NorthWest EnergySept. 30, 2020
“The entire West is concerned about the ability to meet peak. Within the Pacific Northwest, that concern has, for a number of years, been more acute, but for us the arrow has been at red really going back to our 2015 electric supply plan.”
With Mark Gabriel who, CEO and Administrator, Western Area Power AdministrationSept. 11, 2020
“There's an opportunity for the right investments, the right construction, and the ability to work towards...a carbon-free or reduced-carbon future.”
With Vivian Bouet, Chief Information Officer, CPS EnergyAug. 31, 2020
“You want to be able to demonstrate the impact to the customer and have their voices reflected in what you’re doing.”
With Sam duPont, Principal of Strategic Programs, Baltimore Gas and ElectricAug. 10, 2020
“The technology can be brilliant. It can be leading edge. It can be amazing, but if no one actually uses it, then it doesn't really matter. We're trying to balance that leading-edge tech with leading-edge community engagement.”
“The technologies that I think about to get that last 20% out are things like the hydrogen-- development of hydrogen fuel as well as storage, advanced nuclear, carbon capture, dispatchable renewable generation, and of course additional storage and demand side management type opportunities.”
With Steve Malnight, President and CEO, Duquesne Light Holdings and Duquesne Light CompanyJuly 17, 2020
“We're going to serve customers safely, reliably every day with the power they need but do it in very different ways, in ways where customers are not just flipping a switch on and not thinking about where their power comes from but are focused and concerned about their environmental footprint, the resiliency of their system, maybe their self-sufficiency”
With Thomas Pierpoint, Vice President of Electric System Engineering and Technical Services, Austin EnergyJune 30, 2020
“We've got batteries that are tied to large-scale grids. We have the ability to reduce, significantly reduce load off the system at the grid level.”
With Bryan Hannegan, President and CEO, Holy Cross EnergyJune 16, 2020
“We can have all the best technology in the world, but it we don’t deploy it in a a way that's of benefit to the customer… (it) isn’t going to get us anywhere.”
With Jim Robb, President and CEO, North American Electric Reliability CorporationJune 2, 2020
“We have a real opportunity here to really integrate kind of how the grid is planned, how it's operated, and how it's secured as we go through this reinvention process.”
With Patti Poppe, President and CEO, CMS EnergyMay 19, 2020
“We can optimize each individual home's footprint and therefore optimize the grid, optimize the demand curve for the whole state and reduce the peak which prevents the need to build replacement power plants for the coal plants that we're closing.”
With Drew Murphy, Senior Vice President, Edison InternationalApril 22, 2020
“Our longer-term strategy is to build a resilient grid that can provide more and more energy that fuels the economy and the society that we live in.”
With Joe Svachula and Eric Helt, Exelon UtilitiesApril 9, 2020
“What smart meters have done is taken essentially a big meter reading contingent for us off of the street. They've been redeployed as linemen and elsewhere through the company. If you can imagine 10 million meters that need to be read once every month, our employees were literally touching every home, every business in the service territory on a monthly basis.”
With Matthew Ketschke, Vice President, Con EdisonMarch 19, 2020
“You're going to see more rooftop solar. Battery systems will be going on roofs and parking lots of buildings. The way our systems work--it's going to look a lot moe like cross-town traffic in midtown Manhattan.”
With Patrica Collawn, Chairman, President, and CEO, PNMMarch 4, 2020
“Some feel we gave up money that rightly should have gone to shareholders... But we think the solution to climate change will require a compromise on everybody's part.”
With Dr. Shay Bahramirad, Vice President, Engineering and Smart Grid, ComEdFeb. 12, 2020
“We have to think about accommodating more and more renewable energy and distributed energy resources in the system. That means that we need to rethink the design and how the electric grid works.”
With Maria Pope, President and CEO, Portland General ElectricFeb. 4, 2020
“With the pace of technological advances, we're going to continue to see lower and lower costs and better integration of renewable energy.”
With Thomas Farrell, Chairman, President, and CEO of Dominion EnergyJan. 20, 2020
“It’s a brand-new industry in the United States. We do believe it’s ready for prime time.”
With Elliott Mainzer, Administrator, Bonneville Power AdministrationJan. 6, 2020
“It comes down to collaboration…to achieve the kind of objectives that we have for the future of our power system.”
With Ralph Izzo, Chairman, President & CEO, PSEGDec. 19, 2019
“We view ourselves as an energy infrastructure company and not as someone who lives to pump greater volumes of gas or electricity to our customers.”
With Doug Hunter, CEO and General Manager, Utah Associated Municipal Power Systems (UAMPS)Dec. 9, 2019
“We think it’s a game changer. We think this is a market-based solution for greenhouse gas in the electric sector around the world.”
With Chuck Caisley, Senior Vice President, Marketing, Public Affairs & Chief Customer Officer, EvergyNov. 26, 2019
“This is kind of a triple play. It's a win for the environment; it's a win for our shareholders, and it's a win for our customers from a cost perspective.”
With Mary Powell, President and CEO, Green Mountain PowerNov. 15, 2019
“We're very excited about this because this is the opportunity for customers to completely transform their relationship with energy by going with solar, with storage, with an EV and bundling it all into one price and bundling it all into, you know, what we all know as subscription pricing.”
With Audrey Zibelman, CEO, Australian Energy Market OperatorOct. 25, 2019
“We have to be prepared that for the resources that come in, they are very different than the resources that are leaving, and they require different types of network capability, and that has to be addressed in advance, not after the fact.”