DER Task Force February + March Newsletter
February + March 2023 Edition
Announcements + Updates
Calling all Bay Area DERTF members! There will be a Bay Area Happy Hour March 23 6pm at Two Pitchers Brewing Company in Oakland. Make sure you RSVP here and, if you’re in the Bay and want to stay on top of the latest in Bay Area Task Force shenanigans, make sure you join the #bayarea channel in Slack!
We are a little late to the game, but the #portland-maine crew had their first meetup this week at Stars and Stripes Brewing. If you’re Maine-based and interested in nerding out on all things DERs, be sure to check out the #portland-maine channel for future meetups.
From the community
Live from Boston
Are you based in Boston? Do you love Canary Media or Post Script Media? Well, it’s your lucky day. Canary and Post Script are joining forces at Greentown Labs in Somerville for a live event Thursday April 6 at 5pm. Stephen Lacey will be hosting a live episode of his podcast, followed by more speakers and networking. Snag your tickets here!
Thread of the Month
Thread chock-full of highly technical expertise in #resources this month on microgridding across 2 mutually owned meters. Anya Petersen said it best — the level of detail and experience the Task Force brings to the table is why we’re all here <3
Interconnection processes differ pretty vastly depending on utility territory, and based on Alex Snedeker’s comments, Georgia Power may be one of the most insane.
We could all learn something from Australia (h/t Fabian Le Gay Brereton). In particular, they have a nifty parent + child meter construct that allows multi-family, university, and other multi-use spaces to benefit from DERs. In this construct, a parent meter can have multiple child meters, where the parent meter interconnects but child meters have the choice to transact “on market” (transacting in the market as if it were a parent meter) or “off market” (transacting privately). Then, DERs can sit behind the child meter and parent meter, or just behind the parent meter and in front of the child meter, allowing for a much more flexible set of compensation mechanisms for DERs.
The community is whip smart.
SVB collapse’s impact on energy startups
For anyone in the startup space, this past weekend was a wild ride as Silicon Valley Bank was taken over by the federal government in the wake of the bank run that took place through the later half of last week. Aside from the obviously terrifying idea of startups not being able to make payroll, SVB’s collapse will have ripple effects throughout project finance markets that are so critical to many companies in the energy + DERs space. As the broader community starts to digest this change, we want to hear from you! Is your company’s access to financing impacted by SVB’s collapse? How are you meeting project finance needs now that this resource is wiped out? Drop Duncan, Colleen, James or myself a line in Slack or in response to this newsletter.
What we’re reading + listening to
Catching up on the latest DERTF content
Make sure you’re caught up on the pod! Since last newsletter, we’ve released several. Don’t be a Doomer with Noahpinion, Navigating the climate culture war with Troy Cross, and solo ep We need to Gitt of Twitter. Enjoying the content? Throw us a paid subscribe so we can keep putting out content for the community!
VPPs are HOT ft. DERTF companies
There has been a flurry of VPP announcements over the last month or so and this Canary article featuring Michael Lee and James McGinniss is a testament to that. In the last month alone, Tesla, Sunrun, Octopus Energy, and David Energy have all come out with announcements on the VPP front, and all heavily focused on ERCOT. Time will tell how the competitive landscape here and in other markets shapes up! DER Task Force is getting its own fill of VPPs through the #vpp channel in Slack — check it out if you haven’t yet!
Congrats Scale Microgrids!
A huge congratulations to the team as Scale Microgrid Solutions, who earlier this month announced a massive fundraise from KeyBanc and City National Bank to fund construction and operation of its microgrids across markets. This is a first-of-its-kind debt facility and highlights the massive opportunity for banks and financiers as the energy transition gets underway.
We love Lynne
Former DER Task Force meetup guest Prof Lynne Kiesling is releasing some incredible content via her Substack Knowledge Problem, and last month was no exception. She covers everything from the theory of monopolies to practical applications to energy markets, and we can’t get enough of it. Check out her piece on “quarantining the monopoly” here.
Clean Capital is hiring an Energy Markets Associate! Check out and apply to the role here.
Generac is getting into the VPP game and hiring a Program Development Manager and Program Development Analyst for its grid services group.
Scale Microgrids continues to hire at a blistering pace — they are hiring for an Accounting Manager among a number of other roles.
DER of the Month
I am admittedly losing steam when it comes to finding fun and funky DERs. This is an open call to the community to send me pics of the DERs you encounter out there in the wild! Shoot me an email or drop me a line in Slack with your submission and maybe I’ll feature it in a future newsletter 👀