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A California First: Enlisting Distributed Energy for the Transmission Grid

California is already hosting several pilot programs to evaluate how distributed energy resources can help utilities at the level of their sprawling, low-voltage distribution grids. Now, the state is exploring how local clean energy resources can support reliability at the transmission level too. On Wednesday, Pacific Gas & Electric and California grid operator CAISO unveiled a plan that seeks to proactively deploy DERs -- including solar, batteries, smart thermostats and other passive or active energy assets on the grid edge -- as an alternative to fossil fuel generation and transmission-scale infrastructure.
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