Mike Jacobs

Senior energy analyst, Climate & Energy Program

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Michael Jacobs is a senior energy analyst with expertise in electricity markets, transmission and renewables integration work. See Mike's full bio.

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Mike's Latest Posts

Final Clean Power Plan Takes Key Steps to Ensure Reliable Electricity. Now What?

In the past year, utility organizations went to the microphones to call out the EPA for making the draft Clean Power Plan without adequate time or attention on grid reliability. There were numerous reports prepared by utility planners raising alarms about insufficient time to plan for a cleaner power supply, while others showed no technical obstacles to raising the mix to 30-40% renewable energy. Read more >

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What We Learn From A New Clean Power Plan Grid Report

Much heat and smoke has been produced over the EPA Clean Power Plan rule. PJM, the grid operator serving the region from Chicago, through the Ohio Valley to Washington D.C. and Norfolk finds no need for alarm. This is one independent authority that has provided more clarity on grid reliability impacts from the CPP than others with a preview of its next report. Read more >

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Jaw-Dropping News in the Solar vs. Fossil Fuels Debate

You know the cliché about work that can be 59 minutes of boredom and one minute of white knuckle excitement and danger? In the electric power industry, this happens when a major power plant loses its connection to the grid, instantly and dramatically unbalancing the supply and demand of electricity. Blackouts follow if there isn’t an instant response.

Last week I had a similar exciting moment at a conference of utility commissioners, where I learned that a key grid reliability requirement during these emergencies has not been provided by new natural gas plants. Read more >

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The Pope Is an Energy Wonk. Engineers Agree with His Assessment.

From the Papal encyclical: “In some places, cooperatives are being developed to exploit renewable sources of energy which ensure local self-sufficiency and even the sale of surplus energy. This simple example shows that, while the existing world order proves powerless to assume its responsibilities, local individuals and groups can make a real difference.” Read more >

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Congress Can Empower Energy Innovation Far and Wide. Here’s How.

Today there is much attention to new energy supplies, and the policies that can best guide their adoption. As part of that discussion, it’s important to note that most of the new technology and market-based behavior by users and suppliers of electricity stems from Congress passing the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act (PURPA) and its amendments. Read more >

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