You must be logged in to download these resources. Please log in or register.

Energy Efficiency: Today’s Silver Bullet For Gas Utilities

Now more than ever, MCR has found in its current and recent work that gas utility energy efficiency products and services are a strategic opportunity, perhaps a strategic imperative, for local distribution companies (LDC). Gas energy efficiency is an impactful tool in the LDC’s load growth and retention toolbox. Also, as the influence of ESG on cost of capital, shareholder activism, and state and federal policy increases, gas energy efficiency is a big part of improving ESG scores and demonstrating a positive impact on energy and environmental justice priorities.

Download the insight.


Benefical Electrification: A Smart Strategy Makes the Difference

Utilities nationwide are launching beneficial electrification (BE) initiatives, both to respond to market and policy evolutions and to enhance the growth of their electric business. Success begins with a well-thought out strategy.

Download Benefical Electrification Insight.


Is your EV strategy ready – yet?

Electric vehicles (EV) used to be something utilities thought of as on the horizon, but today they are very much here. The potential for significant increases in electricity sales is obvious, but EV also bring opportunities for enhanced customer engagement and experience. However, there are also considerable challenges related to infrastructure requirements to serve new EV loads, and how to manage or optimize the loads. Retail rates for charging, leasing chargers, charging subscriptions and customer-facing incentive programs function hand-in-hand to harness the opportunities and address the challenges.

MCR is providing a three-part series on EV for utilities, starting with conceptual and strategic issues, to be followed by a tariff-oriented paper and a client case study early in 2023.

Download the “Is your EV strategy ready – yet?” paper

Life After Lighting: How Utilities Should Retool Their Energy Efficiency Portfolios (white paper)

Recently, there has been federal activity at the Department of Energy (“DOE”) regarding general service lighting (“GSL”), the Energy Independence and Security Act (“EISA”) efficiency standard, and the 45 lumen per watt backstop for GSL. This activity creates for a timely opportunity for MCR to revisit standards, lighting, and “Life After Lighting” for utilities and their EE programs. In a new, short paper we share:

  • What actions DOE has taken recently
  • The situation with respect to lighting within utility EE portfolios
  • A brief review baselines and standards, using lighting as an example
  • Recommendations and MCR’s framework for acting on them

Download the paper on life after lighting



Pilots for the Changing World of Energy Efficiency (thought piece)

The challenges, demands, and scope of utility energy efficiency (EE) programming are all rapidly changing, bringing a need for real innovation. All parties designing and approving EE plans have been focused on the problem of how to make up for energy and demand savings no longer available from screw-in LED and other lighting, but there are other factors making innovation an imperative. In this piece, we take a look at how MCR combines regulatory and stakeholder expertise with cross-cutting EE services to ensure innovation continues to be successfully developed and implemented at our utility clients.

Download the MCR thought piece.


Environmental Advocates Have Proposed a Sweeping New Approach to Regulating Utility Capital Investments and Earnings (News Alert)

On August 19, 2020, the organization E4TheFuture, whose mission is to “promote residential clean energy and sustainable resource solutions to advance climate protection and economic fairness by influencing… policies,” released a new publication titled, “National Standard Practice Manual for Benefit-Cost Analysis of Distributed Energy Resources” (“NPSM for DER”). Under the direction of E4TheFuture, advocacy-oriented firms such as Synapse Energy Economics and Energy Futures Group, as well as the agenda-driven Smart Electric Power Alliance, authored this manual. E4TheFuture is working with regulatory commissions and other stakeholders to encourage adoption of the ideas presented in the NSPM for DER; if embraced by policy and regulatory actions, the NSPM for DER will dramatically affect how electric and gas utilities plan, make investments and create earnings.

Download the news alert to read implications of the NPSM for DER for utility regulation and corporate strategy


Optimizing Program EM&V Results at Duquesne Light Company (case study)

All energy efficiency professionals know it is challenging to design a portfolio of energy efficiency programs that will withstand tough scrutiny by third-party evaluators and achieve high realization rates. But, you can achieve that goal with high cost effectiveness if you follow our guideline: Programs designed to be measured … measure well. MCR’s case study explores the methods for creating a portfolio of programs that feature evaluation at the core of the program design.

Download the Duquesne Light Company EM&V case study


Energy Efficiency Program Management and Reporting Systems (white paper)

Running a portfolio of energy efficiency programs is a data intensive business. Baseline and replacement technologies, measure lives, deemed savings, budgets, program and cost effectiveness tests results: these represent a small sample of the energy efficiency business information. The users of this information are diverse and support a wide range of processes, including program management, regulatory reporting and customer relationship management.

Having accurate, timely and accessible data is critical to running an energy efficiency portfolio. However, MCR`s research suggests there is no standard set of data management strategies or software systems to manage this important business information. Instead, a wide range of incomplete solutions are being used across the industry.

Download the EE business management systems white paper


Case Study: Cost-Effectiveness Analysis for EV Programs

As demand for electric vehicles (EV) continues to grow, the impacts of EV charging loads on utility systems and rates are an increasing concern. At the same time, the role of the utility in the EV and EV charging marketplaces remains a subject of discussion among regulators, policy makers, and other stakeholders. Regardless of the policies and politics, one thing is clear: Utilities need to know more about EV adoption and charging behavior to optimize resource and system planning and design appropriate rates and programs.
In Part 3 of our series, “Is Your EV Strategy Ready – Yet?” MCR shares a case study on how we assisted the AES utilities with cost effectiveness analyses of EV and EV charging programs addressing light-, medium-, and heavy-duty vehicles to support regulatory approval for cost recovery of such programs.

Read the case study >>>


Modern Electric Vehicle Rate Design Options

Electric vehicle (EV) sales increased dramatically in 2022, with more than 750,000 new all-electric cars registered in the United States – a 55% increase over 2021 sales. Although forecasts vary widely, many analysts expect strong acceleration in EV adoption. Some analysts forecast EVs could represent 50% of total U.S. passenger car sales by 2030.

If growth rates to 2030 are even close to those projected, electric distribution systems will face massive challenges as most are not equipped to handle the increased load. One effective action utilities can take is to design tariffs to manage the charging load, fairly recover costs, and empower customers with flexible rate alternatives. To better understand these pricing solutions, we identified and analyzed several modern EV rate designs and explored how to implement them.

This white paper is Part 2 of the series, “Is Your EV Strategy Ready – Yet?

Read the white paper>>>


Point of View: Gas Energy Efficiency for Strategic Load Growth & Retention

It is time for gas companies to ask themselves a critical question: Can gas energy efficiency programming be used as a strategic opportunity to grow and retain load? Customer-funded natural gas energy efficiency (EE) spending via utility EE programs has risen from approximately $300 million per year in 2006 to over $1.5 billion today. Largely as a regulatory compliance obligation. The current focus on electrification, and other market and political dynamics, create a strategic imperative for gas utilities to reexamine energy efficiency products and services.

In this Point of View piece, exclusively for gas utilities, MCR’s Ed Schmidt discusses use of energy efficiency to maintain and even grow natural gas load.