UtilityExchange.org

September 2, 2020

Reinventing How We Network and Learn

We used to say the annual Aspen event was about both learning and networking because the agenda content drove people to register but the productivity of the informal conversations and connections were the glue that made everyone value the event even more.  It always seemed like every inch of the Aspen Meadows property was filled with small group discussions during our time there.  And the two-hour-long lunches were necessary not just to catch up on email from back at the office but to continue the conversations from the morning presentations.

How do we maintain this event culture in a virtual world?  Well, we've got a couple ideas for the Wednesday evening online reception  First, the Aspen Center for ACESEnvironmental Studies (ACES) has agreed to provide a live online session to meet their current rescued animals.  We started our relationship with ACES as a way to keep family members engaged during the reception while the spouses and/or significant others "talked shop."  A highlight (for some) was to watch the owl have its appetizer of a frozen mouse. Gulp.  But if that's not too your liking, mosey over to the virtual Poster Sessions where you can watch on-demand the brief (less-than-5-minute) recorded descriptions from the poster presenters and then pose your questions via email.  Also, several of our sponsors will host chat rooms where small groups may gather to explore specific topics.  And Tracy Mosher of the Aspen Meadows staff who has been there for EVERY ONE of our past Exchanges will be on-hand with a live update from the venue to tell us how they are weathering the pandemic storm.  She might even share some of chef's recipes for the amazing dishes there.  

How will you network at this year's virtual event?  Who do you want to meet?  You can see the over 110 people who have already registered at www.utilityexchange.org/look-whos-connecting-2020.  Let us know if you see someone there who you would like to meet, virtually, and we will connect you.  Making connections is what we've done every year at the Exchange; this year is no different in that regard.  View how the agenda is evolving at www.utilityexchange.org/14th-conference-agenda and begin to consider which sessions you won't want to miss.  We are looking forward to connecting with you online in a few weeks.

Ed Thomas & Tiger Adolf, UtilityExchange.org

RMUE

Over 110 Registered So Far - Look Who's Connecting 

Every fall for the past 13 years, industry professionals from utilities, government agencies, and solution providers in Colorado and neighboring states have made the trek to Aspen.  This year we are only able to meet online but that doesn't seem to be impacting our registration numbers.  So far, over 110 hearty souls have registered to participate online (see the registrant list at www.utilityexchange.org/look-whos-connecting-2020).  All registrants have online access to these activities: 

  • Tuesday Workshops.  Four presentations will offer a deep dive into key industry issues
  • Wednesday Roundtables. Facilitated, interactive roundtable discussion with registrants on what's getting them up in the morning... and keeping them up at night
  • General Sessions. Fast-paced presentations to the full group on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday with Q&A follow-up
  • Wednesday Reception with Posters, Sponsors, and Animals. Virtual opportunities to connect with poster presenters, to visit sponsor chat rooms, and to meet rescue animals from the Aspen Environmental Center.  Refreshments are on-your-own but that's no reason to be alone.
  • Thursday Concurrent Sessions.  Small group breakouts on narrower topics with opportunity to switch between tracks

Recordings of all the live and pre-recorded poster presentations will be made available to all registrants via the UtilityExchange.org website. 

View Full Agenda Here

Organizations in the News

Ed Thomas to be Panelist for HomeServe Webinar on September 16

Ed Thomas, Executive Director of UtilityExchange.org will be a panelist for a free webinar titled "How are Utilities, Regulators and Customers Planning for a Changing Environment?" to be presented by HomeServe on September 16. Learn more and register HERE.

HomeServe

CREA Produces 2 Free Webinars on September 14 and 24 

The Colorado Rural Electric Association is producing 2 free webinars in September. "Path Toward Creating an RTO for Colorado" is the topic on September 14, and "How Co-ops Will Move Forward from the Pandemic" is  September 24.  Learn more and register HERE.

CREA

Federal Hydropower Supports California Energy Emergency

Western Area Power Administration and the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation joined forces between Aug. 14 and 19, 2020 to generate and transmit roughly 5,400 megawatt-hours in response to California’s energy emergency. Learn more HERE.

WAPA

Access Utility Exchange Web Series from Your Favorite Podcast Channel

The response to our recent web series was incredible with an average of 60 registrants per episode.  If you haven't already, we urge you to "binge watch" the Electric VehiclePricingCustomer Experience, and Clean Energy Transition webinars that are now available for free online.  

These 4 episodes are also accessible as podcasts. Listeners who choose to subscribe via their preferred podcast platform will receive these and future web recordings delivered to their phone, tablet, or computer without having to register each time. Learn more HERE or ask your virtual assistant to play the Utility Exchange Web Series.

Utility Exchange logo

14th Exchange Sponsors

 

August 20, 2020

We Started 2020 with a Plan (and it wasn't this)

The most exciting parts of our recent Utility Exchange Web Series was when presenters were interrupted by barking animals or other humans.  It  connected audience and presenter as humans doing the best we can.  It made the shared experience real.  Tiger and I prepared all the presenters before we started each webcast to not worry when something went wrong.  But, we jokingly added: "Remember that we had a plan."  The success of our 4-part web series gives us the confidence to announce that all our workshops and sessions at this year's 14th Rocky Mt. Utility Exchange will be presented live with plenty of opportunity for interaction.  The only exception will be the poster presentations which will be pre-recorded.  We are prepared to have technical glitches.  We hope you will tune in live to keep things real and celebrate life's glitches.  See how the agenda is evolving at www.utilityexchange.org/14th-conference-agenda.

 We are looking forward to connecting with you online in September.

Ed Thomas & Tiger Adolf, UtilityExchange.org

RMUE

Over 110 Registered So Far - Look Who's Connecting 

We are delighted to announce that over 100 industry professionals have registered to participate in our multi-day live event next month.  Get a peek at who's connecting at www.utilityexchange.org/look-whos-connecting-2020. 

Every fall for the past 13 years, industry professionals from utilities, government agencies, and solution providers in Colorado and neighboring states have made the trek to Aspen.  This year we are only able to meet online but that doesn't seem to be impacting our registration numbers.  So far, over 100 hearty souls have registered to participate online (see the registrant list at www.utilityexchange.org/look-whos-connecting-2020).  All registrants have access to live presentations of these activities: 

  • Tuesday Workshops.  4 presentations will offer a deep dive into key industry issues
  • Wednesday Roundtables. Facilitated, interactive roundtable discussion with registrants on what's getting them up in the morning.. and keeping them up at night
  • General Sessions. Fast-paced presentations to the full group on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday with Q&A follow-up
  • Wednesday Reception with Posters, Sponsors, and Animals. Virtual opportunities to connect with poster presenters, to visit sponsor chat rooms, and to meet rescue animals from the Aspen Environmental Center.  Refreshments are on-your-own but that's no reason to be alone.
  • Thursday Concurrent Sessions.  Small group breakouts on narrower topics with opportunity to switch between tracks

Recordings of all the live and pre-recorded poster presentations will be made available to all registrants via the UtilityExchange.org website. 

View Full Agenda Here

Organizations in the News

Homes Will Have 20 Connected Devices by 2025

Parks Associates research finds U.S. broadband households have an average of 12 connected devices, which will increase to 20 by 2025, creating opportunities for service providers and manufacturers to deploy new value-added services to support the home network and all its devices.  Patrice Samuels will discuss this research in a Friday morning session at this year's Exchange. Learn more HERE.

Patrice Samuels

Xcel Energy Planning for 1.5 million EVs by 2030

Xcel Energy has published its plan to drive toward powering 1.5 million electric vehicles in its service areas by 2030. As a result of this vision, EVs would make up 20% of all vehicles on the road in those areas, more than 30 times the number today. Learn more HERE.

EV

Colorado Energy Office Develops EV Roadmap and Plan

E Source partnered with the Colorado Energy Office to develop a roadmap identifying the information consumers need before making an EV purchase.  It is a foundational element of the state's Colorado Electric Vehicle Plan 2020. View Roadmap HERE and Plan HERE.

Colorado  Energy Office

Access Utility Exchange Web Series from Your Favorite Podcast Channel

The response to our recent web series was incredible with an average of 60 registrants per episode.  If you haven't already, we urge you to "binge watch" the Electric VehiclePricingCustomer Experience, and Clean Energy Transition webinars that are now available for free online.  

These 4 episodes are also accessible as podcasts. Listeners who choose to subscribe via their preferred podcast platform will receive these and future web recordings delivered to their phone, tablet, or computer without having to register each time. Learn more HERE or ask your assistant to play the Utility Exchange Web Series.

Utility Exchange logo

14th Exchange Sponsors

 

August 2020

Pivoting from In-Person to Online Meeting

Thank you for supporting the mutual decision to not meet in-person in Aspen this year. Now the challenge is re-imagining how we will meet online. We appreciate the over 80 of you who have already registered to meet online this year (see who at www.utilityexchange.org/look-whos-connecting-2020. Our most recent webinar on Customer Experience attracted over 100 registrants from as far away as Guam as well as some of the "usual suspects" from Colorado and neighboring states. If you haven't already, we urge you to "binge watch" the Electric Vehicle, Pricing, and Customer Experience webinars we've recorded, and join us for the upcoming Clean Energy Transition webinar scheduled for August 11.

Our current plans are to present as much of the content as possible "live" using a Gotowebinar or Gotomeeting web platform because Zoom, Skype and Teams have limitations among some utility partners. We will pre-record the poster sessions and incorporate real-time chats as well as polls, surveys, and a Sponsor and Poster Showcase "secret word" drawing to keep things interactive. The popular roundtable discussion on Wednesday morning is a special challenge that we are thinking through with the help of the Utility Advisory Committee and Sponsors. See how the agenda is evolving at www.utilityexchange.org/14th-conference-agenda.

We are looking forward to connecting with you online in September.

Ed Thomas & Tiger Adolf, UtilityExchange.org

Clean Energy Webcast

Learn Online About Clean Energy Transition on August 11

Learn how utilities, government agencies, and solution providers are developing and implementing programs and activities to advance clean energy and sustainability initiatives. This webinar/podcast will offer insight on what has already been accomplished, offer an overview of planning underway with a focus on the role of utilities, and take a shallow dive into topics and challenges utilities continue to face in transportation electrification. Snapshot panelists will offer a snapshot of what they plan to present in greater detail at the 14th Rocky Mountain Utility Exchange this fall. The free webinar/podcast on August 11 will follow this 90-minute format:

  • Snapshot Panel. Up to 6 presentations of up to 5 minutes each on this topic (up to 30 minutes)
  • Industry Discussion. Questions and comments between presenters and all webinar registration (up to 30 minutes)
  • Utility Exchange. Candid roundtable discussion among only those webinar registrants who are with a private, public or cooperative-owner utility. All other attendees will be dismissed before this portion of the agenda begins. (up to 30 minutes)

Recordings of the Snapshot Panel and Industry Discussion will be made available to anyone at no charge via the UtilityExchange.org website and all podcast platforms. The utility-only portion of the agenda will not be recorded or transcribed to respect the confidentiality of the participants.

Learn More and Register

Organizations in the News

Franklin Energy and AM Conservation Group Announce New CEO

Franklin Energy and AM Conservation Group announced the appointment of Jim Madej as the company’s new chief executive officer. Madej succeeds founder Paul Schueller, who has served as CEO since Franklin Energy’s inception in 1994 and recently announced his transition to the company’s board of directors. Learn more HERE.

Jim Madej

Public Service Company of Colorado Files DSM Plan for 2020-2021

Public Service Company of Colorado filed its combined electric and natural gas 2021-22 Demand Side Management Plan on July 1. The DSM Plan is grounded in a continuance of preceding years’ successful
approaches, in combination with necessary adjustments made to improve DSM offerings to
reflect market shifts and integrate emerging technologies, and to be responsive to the
Commission’s Decision in the 2017 DSM Strategic Issues Proceeding. Learn more HERE.

DSM Plan Cover

Load Flexibility Potential Projected in Brattle Group Report

A recent Brattle Group study concluded that there is 200 GW of cost-effective load flexibility potential in the U.S., which could be worth more than $15 billion per year by 2030. The report addresses the important role of load flexibility in decarbonization initiatives by integrating renewables and mitigating the rising costs of grid modernization and electrification. Ryan Hledik will summarize the key findings of the study in a Wednesday afternoon session at this year's Exchange. View report HERE.

Ryan Hledik

Access Utility Exchange Webcasts from Your Favorite Podcast Channel

Listeners may choose to register and participate in Utility Exchange Web Series webcasts individually in real-time via GotoWebinar or access the recording on a website page at a later time to also view presenters' contact information and any related background materials. But wait, there's more! We also push the webcast recording to our Utility Exchange Web Series podcast feed. Listeners who choose to subscribe via their preferred podcast platform will receive these recordings delivered to their phone, tablet, or computer without having to register each time through Gotowebinar. Learn more HERE or ask your assistant to play the Utility Exchange Web Series.

Utility Exchange logo

14th Rocky Mountain Utility Exchange, Sept. 29 - Oct. 2, 2020

14th Exchange Sponsors
 

July 2020

Aspen Meadows Is Our Safe Space to Meet in Comfort and in Confidence

The Web Series we've produced over the summer months has been a great way for all of us to stay connected online and share experience and expertise during these challenging times.  We urge you to "binge watch" the EV and Pricing webinars we've recorded, and join the more than 60 people who have already registered for the upcoming Customer Experience webinar.  A Clean Energy Transition webinar is scheduled for August.   

For the past 13 years, energy industry professionals have traveled to Aspen, Colorado every fall to meet in a LEED Certified Gold facility that has Aspen Meadows Resortalways made attendees' health and safety a top priority.  As you consider returning to Aspen Meadows Resort in these challenging times, please take a moment to review the COVID-19 Update page on their website at www.aspenmeadows.com/travel-information.  There you will learn that the venue reopened on June 1 following Pitkin County guidelines with face masks required in all public areas, and no more than 50% capacity for both guest rooms and restaurants.  Further you'll learn that all rooms are guaranteed to be empty for a minimum of 24 hours prior to each new guest arrival, and room assignments will be staggered in order to ensure that common entryways are not shared.  

We are confident that we can observe social distancing requirements in our meetings because the venue is located on 40 acres with 22,000 square feet of meeting space throughout six buildings.  But if you choose to attend or present remotely, please know the venue has state-of-the-art audio/visual technology to accommodate your virtual participation. 

This year's Exchange will offer a first-ever online pass so that participants may choose to meet in-person or online.  We will let all presenters and attendees know by no later than August 28 (30 days before) if this year’s event will be a mix of in-person and online presentations, or if the Exchange will only be online. Regardless, there WILL be a 14th Rocky Mountain Utility Exchange.  

We understand your organization's travel plans may be in flux due to current industry challenges. But go ahead and register anyway. Our cancellation and refund policy remains the friendliest in the industry. Any attendee may cancel registration with full refund and no penalty fees if you notify us by Friday, Sept. 25 (i.e., the business day before the conference starts) and any sponsor may cancel their registration by Friday, Aug. 28.  Details are at www.utilityexchange.org/14th-conference-attend.

We are looking forward to seeing you all in Aspen or connecting online this fall.

Ed Thomas & Tiger Adolf, UtilityExchange.org

Custmer Experience Webcast

Learn Online About Utility-Customer Experience on July 21

Learn how utilities, government agencies, and solution providers are developing and implementing programs and activities to drive efficiency through the utility-customer experience.  This webinar/podcast will offer insight on what has already been accomplished, offer an overview of planning underway with a focus on the role of utilities, and take a shallow dive into topics and challenges utilities continue to face in transportation electrification.  Snapshot panelists will offer a snapshot of what they plan to present in greater detail at the 14th Rocky Mountain Utility Exchange this fall. The free webinar/podcast on July 21 will follow this 90-minute format:

  • Snapshot Panel. Up to 6 presentations of up to 5 minutes each on this topic (up to 30 minutes)
  • Industry Discussion. Questions and comments between presenters and all webinar registration (up to 30 minutes)
  • Utility Exchange. Candid roundtable discussion among only those webinar registrants who are with a private, public or cooperative-owner utility. All other attendees will be dismissed before this portion of the agenda begins. (up to 30 minutes)

Recordings of the Snapshot Panel and Industry Discussion will be made available to anyone at no charge via the UtilityExchange.org website and all podcast platforms. The utility-only portion of the agenda will not be recorded or transcribed to respect the confidentiality of the participants.

Learn More and Register

Organizations in the News

Holy Cross Energy and Tri-State G&T are SEPA Award Finalists

The Smart Electric Power Alliance Power Players Award finalists include organizations and projects familiar to past Exchange attendees.  They include: Holy Cross Energy for Electric Cooperative of the Year, Basalt Vista (Colorado) Affordable Housing Project for Grid Integration Project of the Year, and Duane Highley, CEO of Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association for Individual Power Player of the Year.  Learn more HERE.

Holy Cross Energy

Aspen Meadows Resort Goes 100% Renewable Energy  

Colorado’s Aspen Meadows Resort reopened on June 1st with the environment as its top priority.  This Dolce Hotel is following Pitkin County’s COVID-19 safety guidelines, putting an emphasis on sustainability and environmental initiatives. Working with its energy provider, Holy Cross Energy, the resort purchased 100 percent clean electricity for the campus.  Learn more HERE.

Aspen Meadows Resort

New Report Details Energy Use in Boulder County Cannabis Cultivation Facilities 

The report, compiled by Energy & Resources Solutions (ERS), assessed energy usage, utility consumption data, and productivity, and offers recommendations to increase cost savings, lower carbon footprints, and maximize production yields.  The report also developed energy intensity and productivity metrics for future county benchmarking and industry comparison requirements. View report HERE.

Boulder County

Access Utility Exchange Webcasts from Your Favorite Podcast Channel

Listeners may choose to register and participate in Utility Exchange Web Series webcasts individually in real-time via GotoWebinar or access the recording on a website page at a later time to also view presenters' contact information and any related background materials.  But wait, there's more!  We also push the webcast recording to our Utility Exchange Web Series podcast feed. Listeners who choose to subscribe via their preferred podcast platform will receive these recordings delivered to their phone, tablet, or computer without having to register each time through Gotowebinar. Learn more HERE or ask your assistant to play the Utility Exchange Web Series..

Utility Exchange logo

14th Rocky Mountain Utility Exchange, Sept. 29 - Oct. 2, 2020

14th Exchange Sponsors
 

June 2020

Why Wait Until Fall When We Can Connect Online Now?

Our May 19 launch of the Utility Exchange Web Series went great.  Over 80 people registered for the Driving Transportation Electrification Initiatives snapshot panel followed by discussion among the presenters and audience.  You can view the recording at  www.utilityexchange.org/driving-transportation-electrification-initiatives but the recording doesn't include the last 30 minutes of candid utility-only roundtable about EV initiatives. It was terrific to have utility staff join the discussion from as far away as Jacksonville Electric Authority. 

On the webcast, it was reassuring to see the faces of the snapshot panelists as they offered a glimpse of what they plan to talk more about when we all get to Aspen.  And the discussion clearly demonstrated the level of interest in the topic as well as the eagerness to stay connected online and share experience and expertise during these challenging times.  

We hope you'll make time to join us online June 16 for a similarly-styled discussion about Retail Customer Pricing Initiatives.  We are looking forward to seeing you all in Aspen or connecting online this fall.

Ed Thomas & Tiger Adolf, UtilityExchange.org

Pricing Webcast

Learn Online About Retail Customer Pricing Initiatives on June 16

Learn how utilities, government agencies, and solution providers are developing and implementing programs and activities to achieve innovations in traditional retail energy utility customer pricing.  This webinar/podcast will offer insight on what has already been accomplished, offer an overview of planning underway with a focus on the role of utilities, and take a shallow dive into topics and challenges utilities continue to face in transportation electrification.  Several panelists will offer a snapshot of what they plan to present in greater detail at the 14th Rocky Mountain Utility Exchange this fall. The free webinar/podcast on June 16 will follow this 90-minute format:

  • Snapshot Panel. Up to 6 presentations of up to 5 minutes each on this topic (up to 30 minutes)
  • Industry Discussion. Questions and comments between presenters and all webinar registration (up to 30 minutes)
  • Utility Exchange. Candid roundtable discussion among only those webinar registrants who are with a private, public or cooperative-owner utility. All other attendees will be dismissed before this portion of the agenda begins. (up to 30 minutes)

Recordings of the Snapshot Panel and Industry Discussion will be made available to anyone at no charge via the UtilityExchange.org website and all podcast platforms. The utility-only portion of the agenda will not be recorded or transcribed to respect the confidentiality of the participants.

Learn More and Register

Fall Conference Registration is Open with In-Person and Online Options

This year's Exchange will offer a first-ever online pass so that participants may choose to meet in-person or online.  We will let all presenters and attendees know by no later than August 28 (30 days before) if this year’s event will be a mix of in-person and online presentations, or if the Exchange will only be online. Regardless, there WILL be a 14th Rocky Mt. Utility Exchange.  

We understand your organization's travel plans may be in flux due to current industry challenges. But go ahead and register anyway. Our cancellation and refund policy remains the friendliest in the industry. Any attendee may cancel registration with full refund and no penalty fees if you notify us by Friday, Sept. 25 (i.e., the business day before the conference starts) and any sponsor may cancel their registration by Friday, Aug. 28.  Details are at www.utilityexchange.org/14th-conference-attend.

Organizations in the News

Grand Valley Power Earns NRECA Award

NRECA announced the winner of the Edgar F. Chesnutt award for the Best Total Communication program - Grand Valley Power!  The award-winning initiative was led by Christmas Wharton, Communications Manager at Grand Valley Power and Rocky Mt. Utility Exchange Utility Advisory Committee Member. Learn more HERE.

GVP logo

Xcel Energy Files Transportation Electrification Plan 

Xcel Energy recently filed its Transportation Electrification Plan with the Colorado Public Utilities Commission.  The plan launches 20 new programs such as home, multi-family, commercial fleet and community-based charging, rebate programs and an EV school bus program to expand EV opportunities for all.  Learn more HERE.

Xcel Energy

Franklin Energy Featured by Smart Energy Consumer Collaborative

The Smart Energy Consumer Collaborative recently featured Franklin Energy in its Member Spotlight!  Read the profile to learn how their flexible, scalable offerings empower utilities to effectively engage customers. Learn more HERE.

Franklin Energy

Archive Presentations Are Free to Everyone

Whether you attended last year's Exchange or not, the UtilityExchange.org archives are available to you. If you attended, we can't think of a better way to allow you to share what you learned with others. If you weren't there, this is the place to learn what you missed. Please bookmark this page and if it asks for a username and password please know that you can create a free user profile if you don't already have one. 2019 workshop topics included.  Full agenda with presentation links for the 2019 event are available at www.utilityexchange.org/13th-rmue-resources

13th Rocky Mountain Utility Exchange

14th Rocky Mountain Utility Exchange, Sept. 29 - Oct. 2, 2020

14th Exchange Sponsors
 
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