The Michigan Public Service Commission has released their status report on the second year of the MI Power Grid initiative launched in 2019. The initiative is a multiyear effort designed to help maximize the benefits to residents as electricity providers transition away from large, centrally located power plants to smaller clean, distributed energy resources. The three areas of emphasis are customer engagement, integrating emerging technologies, and optimizing the performance of, and investment in, the state’s power grid.
Aspects of MI Power Grid’s Phase II include,
- The Commission directed Staff to create a redline version updating the Michigan Integrated Resource Planning Parameters that reflects Staff recommendations, feedback from stakeholders, and Governor Whitmer’s MI Healthy Climate Plan directives by December 22, 2021, and to work with stakeholders in Phase III to finalize updates to the MIRPP and IRP filing requirements in 2022.
- The New Technologies and Business Models Workgroup has focused on creating a shared understanding of different technologies and their potential applications, including microgrids, electric vehicles, energy storage, and distributed energy generation, with the goal to identify barriers and potential solutions. The final report is to be filed by December 1, 2021.
- The Distributed Energy Resources Rate Design Workgroup is exploring how customer-owned generation and energy storage are changing the way energy customers use the grid, cost allocation and possible customer charges, and proposing rate design options. After stakeholder feedback is considered, a final study will be presented to the Michigan Legislature on November 1, 2021.
- The Customer Education and Participation Workgroup has been convening stakeholders to examine issues around customer data access; data privacy, sharing and customer consent; opportunities and barriers to customer engagement in MPSC-related activities; and equitable outreach and access to utility programs and offerings. The Commission directed staff to consider how the MPSC’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the MPSC’s 2021-2025 strategic plan; the MPSC’s diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts, and the MPSC’s outreach to Michigan’s tribal communities can inform the workgroup’s recommendations. MPSC Staff will make a draft report available for stakeholder comment and issue a final report by Feb. 25, 2022.
MI Power Grid’s remaining focus areas will include financial incentives and disincentives for utility performance, distribution system data access, updating the Michigan Integrated Resource Planning Parameters and IRP filing requirements, time-based pricing, and voluntary green pricing. To read the full report, please click here.
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