The Utilities industry, while traditionally less innovative and highly regulated, is undergoing significant transformation today, as public utilities face clean energy imperatives, demand fluctuations, price competition, and regulatory compliance pressures. They also need to deal with an unprecedented range of security and privacy threats.
In the past, big regional monopolies ran the whole show, all the way from power generation through to retail supply. But we are starting to see some disintegration of the industry structures that once led the energy generation industry. Electricity consumption is expected to swell as the world becomes increasingly electrified. The Energy Information Administration projects that 355 gigawatts of new electric generating capacity - or more than 40% more than the industry currently supplies - will be needed by 2020 to meet growing demand.
At the same time, wholesale electricity prices are no longer set by regulatory agencies; for the most part, they are free to fluctuate with supply and demand. This heightens the risk of uncontrollable price increases. Electricity typically costs $10 to $20 per megawatt hour. But if conditions are right, it can very quickly go to $5,000 or $10,000 per megawatt hour. Wrestling with pricing risk is a full-time job for utility managers.
Despite efforts to loosen up the industry, authorities are still not completely comfortable leaving utilities alone to the vagaries of the market. The U.S. wholesale market was deregulated in 1996, and the industry has been further liberated on a state-by-state basis since. The process, however, is often marked by political wrangling between consumer and other special-interest groups. Regarded by authorities as natural monopolies, transmission and distribution operations will likely remain highly regulated service areas. Legislators, sensitive to fall-out from unexpected price spikes, want to have a say on retail pricing.
Moreover, power generation is a lightning rod for environmental regulation. Approval for new coal-powered plants is tough to obtain, despite much progress in developing so-called cleaner coal. Natural gas burns cleaner than coal, but still creates some emissions. Nuclear plants, which supply about 20% of U.S. electric power, still operate under the shadow of the Three Mile Island and Chernobyl accidents. The push for cleaner energy ignites interest in renewable sources like hydro power but also solar, wind and biomass. Regulation and environmental issues will likely remain at the top of utility boardroom agendas.
In this highly-regulated and competitive market, energy utilities need every advantage to exceed customer expectations and differentiate. It is no longer enough to offer simple gas and electric services. In order to build loyalty and drive profitability, utilities will need to increase their business agility by anticipating customer needs and offer an engaging user experience.
Estuate provides comprehensive, end-to-end, domain-led business process solutions that enable utilities to focus on their core energy generation competencies. We help customers capitalize on emerging opportunities by:
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NV Energy, Inc. provides a wide range of energy services to 1.3 million customers throughout Nevada and nearly 40 million tourists annually. NV Energy is a holding company whose principal subsidiaries, Nevada Power Company and Sierra Pacific Power Company, are doing business as NV Energy. The company is headquartered in Las Vegas, Nevada.
PNM is the largest electricity provider in New Mexico, serving more than 500,000 customers in Greater Albuquerque, Rio Rancho, Los Lunas and Belen, Santa Fe, Las Vegas, Alamogordo, Ruidoso, Silver City, Deming, Bayard, Lordsburg and Clayton. PNM also serve the New Mexico tribal communities of the Tesuque, Cochiti, Santo Domingo, San Felipe, Santa Ana, Sandia, Isleta and Laguna Pueblos.
The client is a domestic energy delivery company that includes electric transmission & distribution, natural gas distribution and energy services operations. The company serves more than 5 million metered customers, primarily in Arkansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Oklahoma and Texas. The company also owns, operates and develops natural gas and crude oil infrastructure assets in partnership with other companies. With more than 8,500 employees...
at NV Energy.