stylized powerlines at sunset

Report | 2024

Meeting Summer Peaks: The Need for Virtual Power Plants

How VPPs enable utilities and their regulators to reliably and affordably manage summer peaks.

By Kevin Brehm,  Matthew Land, Avery McEvoy,  Lauren Shwisberg, Alan Weschler
Download the report below

Growing loads and increasingly extreme and unpredictable weather will put stress on the electricity grid this summer and in upcoming summers. Utilities and their regulators need solutions that:

  1. Are rapidly deployable to meet near-term summer peaks;
  2. Can leverage existing network and customer assets to manage investment (and associated rate pressure);
  3. Are adaptable and configurable to address changing grid needs in the face of uncertainty; and
  4. Enhance community energy resilience, given increasing risk of extreme weather.

Virtual power plants (VPPs) can meet those needs and should be considered by utilities and regulators as part of a portfolio of solutions.

This brief describes how operating VPPs are being used to support grid reliability and affordability. It provides further guidance for how regulators can enable utilities to use VPPs by replicating successes from other jurisdictions.