2013 Working Groups

Renewable & Distributed Energy

Renewable & Distributed Energy

Advancing Local, Sustainable Energy Solutions

As the U.S. moves toward a cleaner, more diverse energy portfolio, electricity markets will need to accommodate new sources of power and adapt to an increasingly distributed grid system. Localized energy resources--known as distributed energy--reduce the need for expensive transmission, increase the reliability and security of the electric system, and contribute to local economic development. This Working Group will aim to advance the adoption of innovative, cost-effective renewable and distributed energy solutions, including solar, wind, and grid enabling technologies. Energy companies, utilities, financiers, government, and NGOs will come together to identify new renewable and distributed energy projects and models, scale existing programs, and build collaborative partnerships.


Finance and Capital Innovation Energy is notoriously capital intensive, and traditional financing is often only applicable to energy projects of a certain size. Crowdfunding, Real Estate Investment Trusts, Master Limited Partnerships, bond financing, and state green banks hold great potential for distributed energy, and present an alternative financing strategy for large-scale projects.

Creating a Fair, Competitive Market The adoption of technology has outpaced the current structures in place to support the energy market. Changes in rate design can help ensure fair pricing, compensating distributed energy customers for the value they provide to the grid.

Grid Resiliency and Off-Grid Solutions Preparing the grid for the inevitability of power outages is a pressing challenge. The energy industry will need to increase the development of energy solutions that function when the grid is unavailable, such as stand-alone renewable energy, storage, and microgrids.

Place-Based Energy Development Energy needs and challenges can vary greatly from state to state and between specific communities. Viewing energy development in a local context, participants will explore innovative models for energy development on tribal lands, in the State of Hawaii, and on military installations.