Created byrmi-logo

Utility Transition HubTM Insights

Insights Library



Why Purchased Power is Such a Big Deal to Better Understand US Utilities’ Climate Impact

Jon Rea, Obianuju Ugwu-Oju | August 25, 2022

For RMI’s Utility Transition Hub, new data on power purchased by US utilities yields a more complete picture of total emissions


Ensuring an Inclusive Clean Energy Transition

Claire Wang, Sam Mardell, Jeremy Richardson, Uday Varadarajan | May 25, 2022

RMI's recovery and revitalization framework that can help policymakers design and implement comprehensive climate policy that works for communities affected by the energy transition and equip advocates to fight for strong policies.


Running the Numbers: How Clean Electricity Tax Credits Could Save Americans $5 Billion by 2024

RMI | May 24, 2022

The clean energy transition is already well under way, and a new RMI analysis shows that tax credits for clean electricity would accelerate this transition and save American households over $5 billion annually by 2024.


A Fair Green Deal for the Last Coal Plant in Mississippi

RMI | May 12, 2022

Late in 2021, Southern Company, the giant utility headquartered in Atlanta, announced it would pursue the retirement or conversion of 15 coal-fired generation units at its power plants, totaling nearly 9,000 MW of capacity.


How Regional and Local Journalists Can Better Understand Their Energy Landscape

RMI | January 20, 2022

A video walkthrough of RMI's Utility Transition Hub, an online platform that provides stakeholders with freely available and actionable data and insights about utility finances, operations, and emissions.


Thoughtful and Patient Capital: Unlocking the Electrification Opportunity

Rachit Kansal, Ryan Foelske | December 20, 2021

Electric utilities - and by extension, infrastructure investors - are crucial to the success of the global clean energy transition. Meeting this goal requires a wide approach to climate metrics that goes beyond emissions.


RMI Reality Check: COVID, Not Clean Energy, Drove Rise in Electricity Burden

RMI | December 17, 2021

This blog examines three trends with big implications for how utilities move forward with energy transition, and investigates some benefits of clean energy generation for utility customers.


U.S. Federal Policy: Build Back Better legislation can reduce the burden of household energy costs and advance climate goals.

| November 18, 2021


One Simple Tax Change Could Unlock Critical Clean Energy Infrastructure

RMI | November 5, 2021

This blog asserts that the proposed Build Back Better Act can be a transformative climate package that can rapidly accelerate the clean energy transition to meet climate targets and reduce electricity rates.


RMI Reality Check: Proposed Clean Energy Incentives Would Save Electricity Customers Billions

RMI | November 4, 2021

This blog highlights that clean energy tax credits and low-cost financing provisions in the Build Back Better framework can help customers save on electricity costs.


Financing The Coal Transition

RMI | November 3, 2021

This report shows how financial mechanisms can complement policy and regulation to help achieve a rapid, equitable, and smooth coal transition.


Financing Tools for an Equitable Transition to a Clean Economy

RMI | October 8, 2021

This blog describes how US federal policy can enable utilities' transition from fossil generation assets to low-carbon operation, mitigate transition energy burdens, and address the needs of frontline energy communities.


Build Back Better Act would reduce the burden of household energy costs

RMI | October 4, 2021

This op-ed asserts that the Build Back Better legislation being considered in the US Congress can go a long way toward ensuring that energy burdens are lessened and our shift to clean energy is equitable.


PUC Modernization Issue Briefs

RMI | July 12, 2021

This series of Public Utility Commission (PUC) Modernization Issue Briefs focuses on three dimensions—purpose, people, and process—and aims to assist policymakers, advocates, and regulators in their zero-carbon efforts.


When a Coal Plant Gets Built on Top of a Highway, What Happens When It Closes?

RMI | July 6, 2021

This blog explores the uncertain future of the 2.2 gigawatt W.H. Sammis coal-fired power plant in Stratton, Ohio, and the opportunity to clean up and redevelop similar sites vulnerable to closure in the near term.


The Untapped Potential of Public Utility Commissions

RMI | July 4, 2021

This blog highlights the need for modernization of public utility commissions (PUCs) and explores three dimensions of PUC modernization: purpose, people, and process.


Simple Tax Changes Can Unleash Clean Energy Deployment

RMI | June 4, 2021

This blog explores how US tax regulations prevent utilities from using the federal government’s most important clean energy incentives, and presents changes to tax incentives that can unleash the deployment of renewables.


Creating an Equitable and Durable US Climate Policy

RMI | June 2, 2021

This policy brief identifies five key objectives for climate policy to create an equitable and durable energy transition and proposes a suite of policy tools that build off existing programs.


The United States’ Role in Limiting Warming to 1.5°C

RMI | April 2, 2021

This report reveals that limiting cumulative emissions requires that the United States prioritize immediately replacing existing fossil fuel infrastructure with efficient, zero-emissions alternatives, wherever possible.


Key Insights on the Utility Transition

RMI | March 4, 2021

This interactive graphic with data analysis surfaces the less visible forces below the water line that drive future utility emissions.


Securitization in Action

RMI | March 3, 2021

This blog describes how Wisconsin, Michigan, and New Mexico have authorized utilities to use securitization to mitigate the impacts of coal plant retirement.


Five Lessons from Hawaii’s Groundbreaking PBR Framework

RMI | February 3, 2021

This blog offers five important takeaways from Hawaii's experience adopting a comprehensive performance-based regulatory framework for the islands’ investor-owned utilities to align their business incentives with clean energy and customer service goals.


How to Build Clean Energy Portfolios

RMI | February 2, 2021

This report presents recommendations for updated electricity resource procurement processes that address diverse, jurisdiction-specific values (e.g., resilience, decarbonization, local economic development) that utility stakeholders seek.


Feasibility Study for Minnesota Power – Phase 2

RMI | February 2, 2021

Phase 2 of a feasibility study for Minnesota Power, which dives into quantitative modeling to assess the potential financial impacts of securitization on current and future customers of Minnesota Power as well as on the utility’s investors.


Seeds of Opportunity

RMI | January 2, 2021

This report quantifies the scale of the economic development opportunity from the growth of onshore wind and utility-scale solar projects in rural areas and offers recommendations for local, state, and federal leaders to unlock this opportunity.


Feasibility Study for Minnesota Power – Phase 1

RMI | September 2, 2020

Phase 1 of a feasibility study for Minnesota Power, which describes and quantifies the opportunities and challenges for Minnesota Power in utilizing securitization to address unrecovered costs.


PIMs for Progress

RMI | July 2, 2020

This report reviews select historical performance incentive mechanisms that can motivate utilities with financial rewards and penalties to deploy and utilize distributed energy resources.


US Stimulus Strategy

RMI | June 3, 2020

This report outlines recommendations for four key programs that US policymakers can use to jumpstart the economy, address equity, and advance a low- or zero-carbon future for the United States.


How To Retire Early

RMI | June 2, 2020

This report estimates that replacing the entire fleet of global coal plants with clean energy plus battery storage could be done at a net annual savings as early as 2022.


Identifying the Least-Cost Regulatory Framework for Colorado’s Energy Transition

RMI | June 1, 2020

The paper demonstrates how performance-based utility regulation can achieve improved results for both shareholders and customers while reducing total energy demand and attracting innovative solutions.


Decarbonization and Debt Forgiveness

RMI | April 2, 2020

This blog explores the potential for US federal policies that include debt forgiveness and reduction, structured to incentivize emissions reduction, to provide incentives and opportunities for workers and companies shut down by COVID.


Powering Paradise

RMI | February 2, 2020

This report provides a comprehensive review of Hawaii’s clean energy journey, and offers lessons transferable to other US states engaging in their own transition to a 21st-century clean energy system.


The Growing Market for Clean Energy Portfolios

RMI | September 2, 2019

These reports analyze the economics of more than US$100 billion worth of planned investment in new gas-fired power plants and interstate gas pipelines, and finds significant cost savings opportunities for US utilities prioritizing clean energy.


Harnessing Financial Tools to Transform the Electric Sector (2019)

Sierra Club | September 2, 2019

This report examines how the cost of keeping outdated coal plants online is a bad deal for both utilities and for customers, and how securitization can alleviate that financial burden.


Environmental Law & Policy Center and Iowa Environmental Council Rebuttal Testimony

RMI | August 1, 2019

Rebuttal testimony of Uday Varadarajan on behalf of Environmental Law & Policy Center and Iowa Environmental Council.


Environmental Law & Policy Center and Iowa Environmental Council Testimony

RMI | August 1, 2019

Direct testimony of Uday Varadarajan on behalf of Environmental Law & Policy Center and Iowa Environmental Council.


Process for Purpose

RMI | February 2, 2019

This paper reviews regulatory reform efforts undertaken by 10 states, describes the processes by which reform can proceed, and identifies the most significant factors that impact reform efforts’ effectiveness.


Harnessing Financial Tools to Transform the Electric Sector (2018)

Sierra Club | November 2, 2018

This paper outlines how energy professionals can use financial tools like green tariffs, securitization, and capital recycling to take advantage of the cost savings associated with coal phase-out.


Navigating Utility Business Model Reform

RMI | November 1, 2018

This report seeks to establish foundational utility reform options, poses key questions to explore their applicability, identifies illustrative experiences for ideas and concepts, and explores policy implementation options to help spur action.


Coastal Conservation League and Southern Alliance for Clean Energy Surrebuttal Testimony

RMI | October 1, 2018

Surrebuttal testimony of Uday Varadarajan on behalf of South Carolina Coastal Conservation League and Southern Alliance for Clean Energy


Coastal Conservation League and Southern Alliance for Clean Energy Testimony

RMI | September 1, 2018

Testimony of Uday Varadarajan on behalf of South Carolina Coastal Conservation League and Southern Alliance for Clean Energy.


Minnesota Power Rate Case Testimony 2

RMI | June 1, 2017

Direct testimony of Uday Varadarajan, Minnesota Power Rate Case, June 2017.


Minnesota Power Rate Case Testimony 1

Climate Policy Initiative | May 1, 2017

Direct testimony of Uday Varadarajan, Minnesota Power Rate Case, May 2017.


Western Resource Advocates Testimony

Climate Policy Initiative | October 1, 2016

Answer testimony and exhibits of Uday Varadarajan on behalf of Western Resource Advocates.