“Traditionally, vertically integrated utilities were disincentivized to adopt NWAs as higher levels of T&D meant higher returns,” Mehrhoff said. “However, a trend toward decoupling utilities and deregulating markets may assist in the removal of this barrier.”
She also noted how utilities across the U.S. still face challenges when implementing the technology, with the following factors hindering their growth:
Absence of a standard business model
Natural disincentive for utility implementation
“Despite the overall nascency of the market, as more utilities implement NWAs and navigate the regulations guiding their development, the energy industry should develop more clarity surrounding non-traditional T&D upgrades,” Mehrhoff said.