The Community Solar Value Project (CSVP) represents leading energy thinkers and do-ers, ready to make local solar and DERs better, from both the sponsoring-utility and customer perspective. This website is your place to follow our progress, tap free resources, and prepare your questions for customized results-oriented support.
The CSVP approach focuses on the challenge areas where opportunities for lower costs and greater value abound: optimal solar project siting and design, including solar plus storage and load management; procurement, pricing, target marketing, and working through the relationships within the utilities and stakeholder communities, to secure benefits now and for years to come. See our Solutions pages for ready resources and check out our timely, informative Blogs.
CSVP at Solar 2019 and Solar Power International!
The masterminds behind this website (CSVP) are working on several new projects, but often crossing paths, focusing on new ways to increase solar integration value. Jill Cliburn moderated a Solar 2019 panel on PV net value August 6 in Minneapolis. Jill and Extensible Energy CEO John Powers also will be at SPI. They co-authored on a poster on community solar-plus (see Blog) and John also speaks on how load flexibility enhances commercial PV value.
For more free CSVP webinars, including fan favorites, see the archive tab above.
Since completing work for U.S. DOE Solar Market Pathways, CSVP continues to offer both free and fee-for-service support for community solar program design, community-scale solar and solar-plus-storage procurement; policy and training, under the leadership of Jill K. Cliburn and John Powers (Extensible Energy). Contact us to learn more about our network relationships and how we can help you achieve your goals.
Policy Action Required
by Jill Cliburn • 8/1/2019
I’ve got a favorite image of people working in silos, and you’ll see it if you continue reading this blog. Unfortunately, you may see a similar image in your own community—or in any organization that is striving to succeed with community solar-plus. CSVP has led a gentle, persistent campaign to move all the folks needed for these highly integrated solutions out of their silos and into more effective and fast-acting collaborations. We have some resources for that in our existing toolbox. But lately we’ve recognized the benefits of adding one more set of wrenches, i.e., policies.
If you attend SPI, look for the poster that CSVP principals co-authored with Achyut Shrestha of North Carolina Clean Energy Technology Center (NCCETC) and Marta Tomic of Vote Solar. We take on the question, how fast can the community solar industry respond to the increasing need for projects that offer integration value, as well as shared solar? The answer lies, at least in part, in policy.
News and Resources
Peak Load Management Alliance Conference Makes the Connection
CSVP's Jill Cliburn spoke at the May 2019 PLMA Conference, along with Jeremy Goodell, Electric Utility Manager for Grand Rapids, MN. The GRPU plan for solar-plus, completed by the utility and local stakeholders with Jill's assistance, is now in the procurement phase, with support from Minnesota Power. At PLMA, solar-plus was a relatively new topic, but one readily understood. PLMA's load management and integration leaders are preparing to bring all kinds of DERs into the mix to solve 21st Century grid challenges. CSVP's John Powers (Extensible Energy) heads up the Alliance's Integration Interest Group, and helped lead an exercise, based on the real-world experience of Hawaii Electric's Rich Barone, considering a DER portfolio as a non-wires solution. See PLMA for more.
Informative and Inspirational Readings from LBL and SEPA
As CSVP leaders have been participating in the Rocky Mountain Utility Exchange, we find discussions of solar plus storage and DR ever more relevant! To pull a quote from our recent Blog, disruption waits for no one. Here are a couple of reports, just released that we find on our "required readings" list: Tracking the Sun 2018, reviewing a new year of distribution-scale solar market data and trends. Utility-Scale Solar 2018, reviewing similar data at a larger scale, including an excellent section on solar plus battery storage. Also, see the new 2018 Utility Demand Response Snapshot, from SEPA, with research by Navigant and PLMA.
Download Presentations from Conference Appearances Including the CSVP Procurements, Programs and Pricing Workshop. Jill Cliburn's presentation from the September 2018 Rocky Mountain Utility Exchange conference in Aspen, Colorado, is downloadable here. Presentations from CSVP's P3 Workshop are posted in the Library. For additional details, please provide Contact information.
AVAILABLE NOW: Your Complete Guide to High-Value Community Solar Program Planning and Implementation. Go to our Solutions Menu, to find six ways to think outside the box about community solar challenges, so you can speed your internal processes and add program value for your utility and your customers. These approaches and tools have been developed over the course of the CSVP project, working with at more than a dozen utilities of all kinds. The emphasis is on flexibility, as we learned utilities more than an overall picture of idealized step-by-step planning; they need solutions whenever challenges arise. Here's a blog that previews the Solutions site.
Thanks for the Shout-Out (and Call Us for More)
Part of our mission at CSVP has been to inspire more high-value innovation in every aspect of community solar planning, program delivery and implementation. In the recent months we've seen discussion of high-value options in a number of venues. In March, Utility Dive featured a commentary on community storage, citing projects in the works and linking to the CSVP Solutions toolbox as a place to find guidance for community storage on either side of the meter. Thanks to authors Joseph Petta and Eric McConnell! Further, during the 2018 winter NARUC meetings, John Shenot, of the Regulatory Assistance Project, discussed ideas first hatched at CSVP's 2017 Workshop on Procurements, Programs and Pricing. See the co-authored RAP publication on Rethinking Regulation in an Era of Exponential Change. And specific to CSVP's vision, see our July 2017 Blog on innovative community solar pricing.
Second chance to give a listen. The CSVP webinar season has concluded for 2017. But you can revisit 2017 and even earlier webinars in our archive. If you like what you hear, please send us a note through our Contact page. Highlights from this past year: