Utilities

Natural gas power plant with two tall smokestacks against blue and purple sunset sky

Video: Can US Power Grid Handle AI’s Growing Energy Needs?

Are U.S. utilities and energy infrastructure prepared for the energy demand of data centers to more than double by 2030, driven largely by increased use of AI?

March 8, 2024 - Yahoo Finance

Power lines with dense icicles hanging from them against blue sky.

Texas Grid Holds Up to Freezing Temperatures

Efforts made to prepare the state’s infrastructure for winter storms after 2021’s disastrous freeze are paying off.

January 18, 2024 - The New York Times

Close-up of multiple lines of blue natural gas flames inside a boiler.

Massachusetts Moves Toward Decarbonization

The state developed a framework for planning to phase out natural gas, denying industry calls to allow hydrogen and renewable natural gas.

December 12, 2023 - Inside Climate News

Close-up of exposed pipe in trench with blurred utility workers and yellow truck in background.

EPA Calls for Eliminating Lead Water Pipes in 10 Years

The mandate doesn’t include additional funding, prompting backlash from utility companies.

December 5, 2023 - Route Fifty

Worker in orange shirt and white helmet works at top of power line.

Building Resiliency in Rural Power Grids

A National Science Foundation study seeks to understand the impact of climate change and extreme weather on rural electrical grids in diverse geographic areas.

September 28, 2023 - The Daily Yonder

High voltage power line towers sillhouetted against colorful sunset sky.

Utilities Spending Less on Energy Efficiency Despite Higher Fuel Prices

A survey of major utilities reveals a link between states with strict efficiency standards and incentive programs and efforts to improve efficiency on the part of utilities.

September 20, 2023 - Governing

Crew in orange safety vests stand on roadway next to orange heavy equipment

Opinion: The Slippery Slope of Privatizing Public Works

The Biden administration is changing course on a century of policy in public works ownership and management, signaling a concerning shift toward privately owned, profit-driven utilities and other essential services.

May 12, 2023 - The New York Times

Hand holding candle toward small electrical fuse box in the dark

California Developments Wait Months for Power

In areas served by PG&E, new developments sometimes have to wait months before the utility will turn on the power, creating extra costs for builders and keeping new affordable housing units off the market.

April 25, 2023 - Politico

Power lines against sunset sky and snowy landscape in rural Minnesota

Minnesota Utilities to Go Carbon-Free by 2040

If signed by the governor, a new state law would require all utilities in the state to switch to renewable energy within two decades.

February 7, 2023 - Route Fifty

Factory Emissions

Carbon Emissions Down, but Not Drastically

Transportation activity is down considerably, but other sources of carbon dioxide are still going strong.

May 12, 2020 - Grist

Butte County, California

California Town Looks to Rebuild After Wildfire, but No Clear Path Forward

Paradise, California, burned to the ground last year, and the town’s recovery has begun. But questions remain about the measures that should be put into place to prevent another disaster.

November 15, 2019 - Los Angeles Times

Smart Infrastructure

It's Time to Map and Share Data on Underground Infrastructure

A call for cities like New York to accurately map, model, and share information on underground water and utility infrastructure for public benefit.

October 30, 2019 - Crain's New York Business

California Wildfire

PG&E Promises to Keep the Lights on After Declaring Chapter 11 Bankruptcy

Pacific Gas and Electric has declared Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the face of "actual and potential" liability.

January 29, 2019 - San Francisco Chronicle

Northern California Wilidfires

California's Largest Utility Files Chapter 11 Bankruptcy

PG&E announced that it is filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, facing $30 billion in liability after two years of catastrophic wildfires in the state of California.

January 15, 2019 - The Mercury News

Washington DC Metro

Judge: D.C. Metro Does, In Fact, Own Its Facilities

An internet company can't just stop paying for the use of underground transit facilities when it decides the subway company doesn't have the right to charge for the access.

November 12, 2018 - WTOP

Fiber Optic Cable

The 'Worst-Connected Cities' in the United States

Here are the cities where residents are the least likely to have a broadband Internet connection in their home.

June 9, 2018 - Route Fifty

electricity infrastructure

Wanted: An Electrical Grid That Looks Like the Internet

All the coal industry's money has not been able to stem the growth of renewable energy and distributed generation. For the electricity grid, the future is already here.

June 2, 2017 - Quartz

Water Main

Report: How Do Local Water Utilities Measure Up?

With the federal funding situation uncertain, water utilities are left in widely varying financial positions. Comparing local utilities across six metrics paints a grim picture.

January 19, 2017 - Brookings Institution

No Dumping

A Little Help Explaining the Stormwater Utility Concept

American Rivers has created a toolkit for implementing stormwater utilityies

November 17, 2016 - American Rivers

Infrastructure

The Winners and Losers of Utility Rates

An example from St. Louis County shows one way that sprawl is subsidized by areas closer to the regional center.

October 25, 2016 - nextSTL

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Urban Design for Planners 1: Software Tools

This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.

Planning for Universal Design

Learn the tools for implementing Universal Design in planning regulations.