By - Jon Brown

Integrated Resource Planning Summit
March 20-21, 2019 | Charleston, SC

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Traditional utility integrated resource planning (IRP) modeling, analysis and preparation have been dominated by:

  • Central station firm generation sited at specific locations
  • Fueled mainly by gas, coal, oil, hydro and nuclear
  • With one-way transmission and distribution systems
  • And well-established reliability and high resource capacity factors

This program will pivot to the new IRP paradigm. It is designed by integrated resource planners for integrated resource planners, and will tackle several conditions throttling contemporary resource planning.  Leading utility, power resource planning professionals and related industry experts will address the key elements associated with these emerging operational issues, environmental mandates, variable energy resources, regulatory policies, and uncertainty factors that now dominate IRP planning requirements, such as:

  • Increases in variable large-scale renewable generation and distributed energy resources (DERs), with their fair-weather reliability and low capacity factors, fueled by sources that cannot be controlled
  • Analytical modeling tools that often do not fully encompass the requirements necessary to develop sound resource plan generation portfolios
  • Still-nascent battery energy storage systems, grid modernization considerations, and multi-directional transmission and distribution technologies
  • Load-eroding drivers such as energy efficiency, demand response (DR), smart grid, smart cities, and customer choice
  • Legislative mandates requiring environmental, technological, and policy compliance that don’t account for their complexity and implications

The conference will incorporate case studies that provide a solid survey of “best practices” thinking and methodologies by a full range of utilities and subject matter experts. 


Learning Outcomes

Attendees will gain practical skills and insights on how to:

  • Develop resource plans that incorporate the full palette of supply and demand options
  • Describe how IRP planners can analyze, model and incorporate storage in IRPs
  • Determine the value of portfolio flexibility for resource planning and market operations
  • Explore how resource planning can help utilities and competitive power businesses in a transforming utility business model environment
  • Identify how to properly account for all variables when analyzing, modeling and planning portfolio decisions
  • Review lessons learned to understand the range of different approaches across North America with regard to fully integrating distributed solar into utility planning
  • Consider the broader range of inputs that future resource decisions should incorporate to achieve a more holistic system-wide valuation and planning approach
  • Assess the portfolio effects of renewable energy resources
  • Appraise the accuracy of forecasting customer adoption of demand response and distributed energy resources to inform the IRP



EUCI has been accredited as an Authorized Provider by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET).  In obtaining this accreditation, EUCI has demonstrated that it  complies with the ANSI/IACET Standard which is recognized internationally as a standard of good practice. As a result of their Authorized Provider status, EUCI is authorized to offer IACET CEUs for its programs that qualify under the ANSI/IACET Standard.

EUCI is authorized by IACET to offer CEUs for this event.

Requirements For Successful Completion Of Program

Participants must sign in/out each day and be in attendance for the entirety of the conference to be eligible for continuing education credit.

Instructional Methods

PowerPoint presentations and case studies will be used in program.


Wednesday, March 20, 2019

7:45 – 8:15 a.m. :: Registration and Continental Breakfast

8:15 – 8:30 a.m. :: Welcome and Overview

8:30 – 9:30 a.m. :: Accurately Valuing DER Resources and Their Customer Adoption Rates

For many utilities, incorporating energy efficiency, demand response, and distributed generation resources into integrated resource plans and operations relies on static studies and forecasts, generated by different departments.  The actual performance of the resulting demand-side management strategy may not match the forecast, thereby resulting in a new forecast that is similarly created for the next cycle.  This segment will describe a more dynamic process for valuing these “non-traditional” resources through an approach that considers timing, size, and uncertainty, and offers the flexibility to modify acquisition over time.  It will address the following topics:

  • Grouping customer-side resources into supply curves for use in a capacity expansion model
  • Preparing realistic customer adoption forecasts
  • Using sensitivity analysis to assess the impacts of customer resource uncertainty
  • Choosing the best demand-side management strategy through stochastic analysis
  • Using decision analysis to modify customer-side resource strategies over time

Jane Colby, Principal, The Cadmus Group

9:30 – 10:30 a.m. :: Resource Planning that Accounts for Increasingly Volatile Weather Dynamics

As renewable energy assumes a greater presence in a utility’s supply stack, the influence of weather conditions on system capacity elevates in significant and often unpredictable ways.  This segment will:

  • Assess the impact of weather variability on flexible resource requirements
  • Evaluate the portfolio effects of weather on capacity contributions of wind and solar projects
  • Translate the effects of weather variability into planning metrics

Gary Dorris, President, Ascend Analytics

10:30 – 10:45 a.m. :: Morning Break

10:45 – 11:45 a.m. :: Renewables as the New Baseload: Resource Planning for a New Power Paradigm

The “new baseload” resources of wind- and solar-generated power cannot be analyzed correctly by the traditional long-term planning approaches, which typically assign no value to flexible capacity (including storage). Yet, it is flexible capacity that is most needed to attain lowest NPV cost and lowest CO2 from utility portfolios.  A few, but not all, software approaches and modeling tools available today can model flexibility correctly. This segment will address the output delivered by modeling approaches that can/cannot capture the value associated with flexibility – including the difference in NPV costs and CO2 profiles – and how that information can translate into a more sustainable utility IRP.

Joseph Ferrarri, General Manager – Utility Market Development, Wartsila North America

11:45 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. :: Estimating the Value of Improved Distributed PV Adoption Forecasts for Utility Resource Planning

Mis-forecasting the adoption of customer-owned distributed photovoltaics (DPV) can have operational and financial implications for utilities; forecasting capabilities can be improved, but generally at a cost. This segment will inform the decision-space by discussing the costs of mis-forecasting during the resource planning process, based on a recently completed NREL analysis. It will examine a straightforward methodology for applying the results to a particular utility service territory — allowing resource planners to make first-order estimates of the benefits of improving their DPV forecasting capabilities — to ultimately guide their decision on whether to make an investment in tools or services. 

Pieter Gagnon, Analyst – Energy Policy and Technoeconomics, National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL)

12:30 – 1:30 p.m. :: Group Luncheon

1:30 – 2:15 p.m. :: CASE STUDY: Modeling for a Clean Energy Plan that Transitions out of Carbon Generation Resources

In 2016, Michigan law established a new mandate for all utilities to file an IRP by 2019. In development of its IRP and a recently announced Clean Energy Goal, Consumers Energy proposed plans to eliminate all coal-fired generating capacity by 2040.  This segment will detail what types of modeling and analyses were conducted by the utility, and the decision process of how the company proposes to replace 3,000 MW of coal- and gas-fired generating capacity by 2040 with renewable and demand side resources.

Sara Walz, Senior Engineering Technical Analyst Lead, Consumers Energy

2:15 – 3:30 p.m. :: Accounting for Future “Non-traditional” Resource Options in Current IRPs

Behind-the-meter (BTM) storage, electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure, beneficial electrification: these and other resources are likely to play a (perhaps significant) role in future utility operations.  Yet, most would agree that these are “not yet prime time” components.  How to reflect the span, scope and investment required of these prospective resources — and the time frame in which they will emerge in a meaningful fashion — is where art and science come together in IRP development.  This segment will address how some utilities are evaluating these investments explicitly in their IRPs through ownership and partnership models, and compare these resource options to more traditional supply- and demand-side investment alternatives.

James McMahon, Vice President, Charles River Associates (CRA)

3:30 – 3:45 p.m. :: Afternoon Break

3:45 – 4:30 p.m. :: CASE STUDY: Portfolio Transition – Balancing Benefits and Risks with Uncertainty Risk

A significant requirement in contemporary IRP development is maintaining flexibility with respect to planning, operations, policy/regulation, financial performance, and other measures.  Such flexibility is especially important when considering portfolio objectives, renewable adoption, plant retirements, grid modernization and electrification.  This segment will focus on the context of these considerations when developing long-term resource plans. 

Matt Michels, Director – Corporate Analysis, Ameren

4:30 – 5:30 p.m. :: Creating Renewable Resources Adoption Strategies that Tie into RPS Mandates

This segment will consider how some utilities are correlating their renewable energy investments, PPAs and other arrangements into IRPs in ways that deliver these resources beneficially to their load, as required by renewable portfolio standards (RPS) and related regulatory mandates.

Panel Discussion

5:30 – 6:30 p.m. :: Networking Reception

Thursday, March 21, 2019

7:45 – 8:15 a.m. :: Continental Breakfast

8:15 – 9:45 a.m. :: The Next Big Advancement in Utility Planning: Integrated Generation, Transmission & Distribution Planning

Many US states are inundated with distributed energy resources (DERs) and far-reaching grid modernization plans by regulators. No matter the level of DER penetration, most utilities and regulators are grappling with modernizing the integrated resource planning process and operational requirements to meet the changing market. Power generation is shifting from stable, dispatchable resources connected to power transmission to variable, renewable resources connected to power distribution. The lack of coordination between the generation supply, transmission, and distribution planning domains is driving the need for a more integrated approach to planning. How can the planning process shift to address this new reality? The panel will explore:

  • The state of the market when it comes to Integrated GT&D
  • The influence of new technologies on long-term investment planning
  • Core set of planning steps applicable to IRP, supply, transmission, distribution, and DER planning
  • Network modeling approaches to fully integrate existing planning tools

Gary Vicinus, Managing Director – Energy Business Advisory, Siemens

Jim (J. T.) Taylor, Vice President – Energy Solutions, Siemens

9:45 – 10:00 a.m. :: Morning Break    

10:00 – 11:45 a.m. :: Modeling and Incorporating Storage within IRPs

This segment will consider how some utilities are incorporating storage in its multiple dimensions in their IRPs, addressing attributes such as:

  • Determining what type of asset it is
    • Generation
    • Distribution
    • Transmission
    • Demand response
  • Distinguishing between distributed vs centralized storage Battery optimization under various use cases
  • Bid strategy if utility operates within market (e.g., CAISO, SPP, MISO) structure

Panel Discussion

11:45 a.m. :: Program Adjourns





Resource Planning For Accelerating Renewable Energy Conditions

Tuesday, March 19, 2019


Renewable resources are on a rapid course to become the primary source of economic energy, yet their inherent intermittency introduces new risks and planning criteria. The implications of this inexorable rise of renewables creates new market dynamics that radically alter traditional planning notions.  The long-preserved boundaries of base, intermediate and peaking resources to meet a smooth sinusoidal load curve has yielded to a saw-tooth net load that rapidly ranges from surpluses to deficits.  The hallowed grounds of long-run equilibrium conditions of a CC or CT have become confounded with declining implied heat rate curves and extreme intermittency.  This workshop will examine the market manifestation of increased renewables that creates planning conditions where matching the volatility of prices becomes as important as establishing the average price of energy, and requires consideration of the following elements:

  • Quantifying the impact of increased renewables penetration on market price volatility
  • Establishing new criteria for resource adequacy
  • Weighing the marginal value of wind versus solar
  • Determining the need and value of flexible generation
  • Utilization and valuation of energy storage

Learning Outcomes

  • Assess the effects of increasing renewable energy resources on present and future price formation through both supply and demand fundamentals and observed market dynamics
  • Evaluate the impact of renewable resources on traditional and flexible capacity requirements
  • Examine the impact of technological advances of batteries, renewables, flexible loads, and EVs on present and future supply and demand fundamentals
  • Identify over-supply conditions, their price ramifications and how IRPs should reflect these structural changes


7:45 – 8:15 a.m. :: Registration and Continental Breakfast

8:15 – 8:30 a.m. :: Overview and Introductions

8:30 – 11:45 a.m. :: Workshop Timing

  • Market Transformation from West to East
    • Policy, market, and technology changes
    • Changes in the load and resources mix in the West
    • Economic challenges for baseload generation in the Midwest
    • Growth of solar in the Southeast and implications for vertically integrated utilities
  • Impact of Technological Change on Future Supply and Demand Fundamentals
    • Planning for distributed energy resources
    • Economics of batteries for regulation, ramping and load-shifting
    • Electric vehicles (EVs) as fixed and flexible load adoption and growth
    • Internet of Things (IoT) to aggregate flexible demand
  • Determining Resource Adequacy in a High Renewable Portfolio
    • Understanding the effect of “firm” capacity contributions of renewables
    • How to translate simulation uncertainty into standard planning metrics
    • Assessing the impact of increased renewable penetration rates on flexible resource requirements
  • Valuing Energy Storage Economics
    • Case studies involving energy storage applications of utilities operating in organized markets
    • Optimizing the sizing of energy storage projects for flexible and firm capacity needs
    • Value of energy storage for non-ISO balancing areas
  • The Road to 100% Renewables
    • Hawaii’s 100% renewable supply plan and its influence on the utility integrated resource plan
    • SB 100 in California and what that means for utilities
    • Promise and peril of mass de-carbonization of the electricity sector


Gary Dorris, President — Ascend Analytics

Gary Dorris, Ph.D., President, Ascend Analytics has been a thought leader in energy modeling and risk analysis for 18 years. He has led the development of more than a dozen resource plans and pioneered new techniques for risk-based resource planning and portfolio selection.  Dr. Dorris has developed new techniques in risk management that integrate uncertainty around both the physical and financial aspects of a utility’s portfolio.  His analytic innovations have extended toward the development of a dozen software applications used by some 50 energy companies. A few years ago, he won distinguished recognition from the IPE for contributions to the field of energy risk management.


Developing Supply-Side Resource Assumptions for an IRP

A Practical Treatment of Trends and Best Practices

Tuesday, March 19, 2019


This workshop will address best practices for developing supply-side resource assumptions for an IRP.  It will begin with an interactive discussion of industry trends, including observations regarding technology and cost changes, the growing list of resource options for planners to consider, and observations related to growing demands from regulators and other stakeholders.

The workshop will then offer a review — centered on a practical case study from CRA’s recent experience — of how to conduct an RFP (or request for proposals) for those resources as part of the IRP process.  This review will include discussion of how to think about the right timeline for running an RFP within the IRP; a practical summary of what to ask for, how to conduct bidder outreach, and how to engage with regulators and stakeholders; and considerations for structuring internal teams within a utility organization to run the RFP and the IRP.  The case study discussion will include a detailed framework for RFP-response evaluation, with a focus on what to consider when translating RFP bids into assumptions for IRP analysis.

The workshop will conclude with a discussion of other important considerations for utilities in the development of supply-side IRP assumptions in light of several emerging trends.  These include considerations for monetizing tax benefits associated with renewable projects, as well as techniques for incorporating potential benefits associated with distributed energy resources that are not typically accounted for in traditional IRP models.  The discussion of these considerations will focus on specific applications and case studies from recent CRA work with utility clients.

Learning Outcomes

  • Identify industry trends for supply-side assumptions development
  • Assess best practices for running an RFI/RFP
  • Evaluate responses as part of an IRP
  • Examine other key considerations in supply-side assumptions development
  • Identify best practices associated with developing supply-side resource assumptions for an IRP


12:30 – 1:00 p.m. :: Registration

1:00 – 1:15 p.m. :: Overview and Introductions

1:15 – 4:45 p.m. :: Workshop Timing

  • Industry Trends for Supply-Side Assumptions Development
    • Observations on rapid technology and capital cost change
    • Growing list of options to consider
      • Demand side elements
      • DERs
      • PPAs
      • Existing assets
    • Stakeholders and regulators demanding more transparency
  • Best Practices for Running an RFI/RFP
    • Timing
    • Process
    • Regulatory and stakeholder considerations
    • Internal team organization
  • Evaluating Responses as Part of an IRP
    • Integrating RFP data into IRP models
      • Organizing bids into tranches
      • Screening vs. full revenue requirements analysis
    • Portfolio development considerations
  • Other Key Considerations in Supply-Side Assumptions Development
    • Modeling DERs on “equal footing” with utility-scale options
    • Monetizing tax incentives (i.e., PTC/ITC) in different ways
  • Takeaways
    • Best practices and concluding thoughts


Jim McMahon, Vice President, Charles River Associates (CRA)

Jim McMahon is a vice president in CRA’s Energy Practice.  He has been a strategic and financial consultant to the energy sector for approximately 20 years, working frequently with diversified energy companies, electric and gas utilities, merchant generators, and private equity.  Mr. McMahon specializes in corporate strategy, business planning, and transaction support.  Over his career, he has led more than 200 projects for some 75 separate clients in the U.S., Canada, Latin America, Asia, and Australia.  In addition to his private company work, he has worked with numerous state and federal agencies and independent system operators on strategic planning related to deregulation, community aggregation, and Order 1000.  Mr. McMahon joined CRA in 2007 after nine years with Navigant Consulting, where he was a Director in their Strategy and M&A group. He served on the Board of Directors for Pennichuck Water Works, an investor owned water utility, from 2012 to 2016.

Patrick Augustine, Principal, Charles River Associates (CRA)

Patrick Augustine is a principal in CRA’s Energy Practice. He specializes in market analysis and strategy development within the electric utility and power market sectors. Mr. Augustine is experienced with power market dispatch systems and utility planning tools and has performed power market assessments and utility IRP analyses throughout North America in support of project developers, utilities, investors, and lenders in their project development, financing, and planning efforts.  He has significant experience developing power market modeling approaches and integrating key market drivers such as fuel prices, environmental compliance costs, and regulatory outcomes into economic analyses that evaluate expectations for power market prices, new generating capacity developments, and utility cost and risk profiles.  Prior to joining CRA, Mr. Augustine was an executive director in energy industry consulting at Pace Global.

Robert Lee, Vice President, Charles River Associates (CRA)

Robert Lee is a Vice President in CRA’s competitive auctions and bidding practice.  He specializes in designing and executing structured sales and procurement channels for clients in a broad array of industries and markets. In these engagements, Mr. Lee has worked closely with his clients’ senior management to define market rules tailored to meet their business objectives, while recognizing the unique constraints of the individual industries.  He has worked with utilities across the U.S. to design and execute procurement processes for energy and capacity and Standard Service Offer supply in multiple PJM states.  Prior to joining CRA, Mr. Lee was a principal with the PA Consulting Group and a Senior Associate at Putnam, Hayes and Bartlett, Inc.


Jane Colby, Principal, The Cadmus Group

Gary Dorris, President, Ascend Analytics

Joseph Ferrarri, General Manager – Utility Market Development, Wartsila North America

Pieter Gagnon, Analyst – Energy Policy and Technoeconomics, National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL)

James McMahon, Vice President, Charles River Associates (CRA)

Matt Michels, Director – Corporate Analysis, Ameren

Glen Snider, Director – Resource Planning and Analytics Carolinas, Duke Energy invited

Jim (J. T.) Taylor, Vice President – Energy Solutions, Siemens

Gary Vicinus, Managing Director – Energy Business Advisory, Siemens

Sara Walz, Senior Engineering Technical Analyst Lead, Consumers Energy


Charleston Marriott

170 Lockwood Dr.

Charleston, SC 29403

Reserve your room:

please call l-843-723-3000

Room Block Reserved For:

Nights of March 17 – 20, 2019

Room rate through EUCI:

$229.00 single or double plus applicable taxes
Make your reservations prior to February 17, 2019.


Please Note: Confirmed speakers do not need to register and are encouraged to participate in all sessions of the event. If you are a speaker and have any questions please contact our offices at 1.303.770.8800

EventEarly Bird Before
Friday, March 01, 2019
Standard RateAttendees
Integrated Resource Planning SummitUS $ 1295.00US $ 1495.00

This event has the following workshops:

Resource Planning For Accelerating Renewable Energy ConditionsUS $ 495.00
US $ 595.00
Developing Supply-Side Resource Assumptions For An IRPUS $ 495.00
US $ 595.00

Take advantage of these discounts!

  • Attend the Conference and both workshops and pay US $ 2,095.00 per attendee (save US $ 190.00 each)
  • Attend the Conference and any 1 workshop and save US $ 95.00 per attendee

Register 3 Send 4th Free!

Any organization wishing to send multiple attendees to these conferences may send 1 FREE for every 3 delegates registered. Please note that all registrations must be made at the same time to qualify.

Cancellation Policy

Your registration may be transferred to a member of your organization up to 24 hours in advance of the event. Cancellations must be received on or before February 22, 2019 in order to be refunded and will be subject to a US $195.00 processing fee per registrant. No refunds will be made after this date. Cancellations received after this date will create a credit of the tuition (less processing fee) good toward any other EUCI event. This credit will be good for six months from the cancellation date. In the event of non-attendance, all registration fees will be forfeited. In case of conference cancellation, EUCIs liability is limited to refund of the event registration fee only. For more information regarding administrative policies, such as complaints and refunds, please contact our offices at 303-770-8800


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