Commercial and industrial firms are prime candidates to become prosumers due to the large size of their facilities, variations in power use, and ability to buy and sell electricity products at scale. The most common and fast-growing source of locally generated (or “distributed”) power is rooftop solar. Many commercial and industrial buildings have rooftops, parking structures, and unused land that can host systems that are significantly larger and cheaper than residential systems.
Many companies are already in markets where “demand-response” contracts enable them to sell the right to manage a portion of their power use, allowing them to be paid for reducing their energy during hours when the spot price of power is high. In the future, in addition to selling actual power reductions, companies will be able to sell other currently-hidden services produced by their buildings, solar systems, or vehicle fleets back into the grid.
What can today’s non-energy CEOs do to prepare their firms for a prosumer future?
A comprehensive energy audit by a qualified energy services firm familiar with the latest smart control technologies, traditional energy efficiency measures such as efficient motors and lights, and demand response options is the way to start. This audit will almost certainly reveal opportunities to save money and sell (or at least conserve) some energy services right now.
For more information, please, click on the Harvard Business Review article below: