In a Utility Week article, Guidehouse explains how a whole system approach can help energy systems avoid major outages
Severe weather events, an increase in intermittent supply resources, and continuously changing demands are increasing pressure on the world’s energy systems. Integrating energy, water, and communications is one way to help manage stress on the system.
In an article for Utility Week, Mark Livingstone, director at Guidehouse, discussed key challenges and opportunities associated with an integrated energy system.
Livingstone noted that individual impartiality and adoption of a whole system view will be a large, overarching task for both the transmission-distribution system vertical and gas and electricity horizontal. However, despite this challenge, Livingstone believes there are benefits to making the whole system approach work.
“By combining the best features and economics of gas and electricity, we can improve the energy system’s resilience at a lower cost – not to mention the other potential benefits related to decarbonization,” Livingstone said.
A combined approach to network innovation strategy will require leadership, coordination, a business plan, and the right incentives for all parties. According to Livingstone, one way to achieve this would be through “a well-defined whole system operator role, whose responsibilities would cut across boundaries to achieve optimal solutions.”