Green Button Apps: How Innovative Are They?

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Although “Green Button” applications are either here or on their way, Katherine Tweed of greentechgrid: says “…the energy apps that completely knock our socks off are still off in the future.” Green Button applications inform residential and consumer customers about their energy consumption, but don’t take the next step of linking to rebates available for replacing energy draining appliances, which … Read More

What Can the Utility Industry Learn from Zappos?

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Director of E Source Customer Experience Services, Maureen Russolo, believes the utility industry can learn something from online retailer Zappos about customer service and employee management. She discusses some of Zappo’s unique approaches, including focusing on “average speed to answer” versus “average handle time,” and encouraging employees to make a “personal emotional connection” with the customer. Another highlight for Russolo … Read More

London tests out Smart City operating system

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Because of its long history of urbanization, London has been chosen to test a system that powers cities via smart grid technology, with the Greenwich peninsula as the central area of focus. The program will connect water, transport, and energy infrastructure to meet the needs of city dwellers, and will include ‘smart’ lamp posts. Sensory technology will monitor heating and … Read More

A Standard for Cleaner Electricity

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U.S. Senator Jeff Bingaman, Democrat from New Mexico, recently introduced Senate bill 2146, the Clean Energy Standard Act of 2012. The bill urges the establishment of a national standard for electricity in order to incentivize clean energy technologies and keep the U.S. competitive. Bingaman emphasized this was not a partisan proposal, and discussed the wide variety of citizens and stakeholders … Read More

CBO Analyzes U.S. Energy Security

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The Congressional Budget Office report on the underlying factors of energy security in the United States was released recently, focusing on electricity and transportation, the two sectors which consume the most energy. The Chairman, Senator Jeff Bingaman, noted, “…the long-term solution to the challenge of high and volatile oil prices is to continue to reduce our dependence on oil, period.” … Read More

Speakers Rail Against Dominion Va. Power Plans

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Dominion Virginia Power is the largest utility in the state of Virginia. Critics recently showed their opposition to Dominion’s 15-year road map, saying it focused too much on “dirty” energy, instead of solar and wind. Citizens expressed their concerns and Dominion responded by saying the plan is updated every two years. The utility also touted its foray into solar power … Read More

Energy efficiency directive ‘will fail’ without mandatory smart meter minimum spec

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The European Union metering industry wants mandatory requirements for smart meters in order to reduce primary energy consumption 20% by 2020. Industry expert John Harris says, “If we don’t do it now, we are going to lose the chance.” The UK’s government is opposed to the European Commission’s proposal, which is baffling to chief executive Howard Porter of the UK … Read More

What Energy Goes into Our Homes

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The 42nd anniversary of Earth Day was observed on April 22. In honor of the occsasion, the U.S. Census shared how we heat and cool our homes and provided energy-saving advice. According to 2010 figures, 2.2 million homes in the U.S. were heated with wood and 38,010 were heated with solar power. In 1974, only 48% of new homes had … Read More