IDC Energy Insights held its webinar “Top Ten Predictions for the North American Utilities Industry” today. Rick Nicholson, Vice President of Research at IDC led the call.
During the call the analysts reviewed the important driving forces impacting impacting technology investment within the Utilities Industry for 2010. Driving forces include energy efficiency and demand response programs, smart metering and the smart grid, renewable and distributed energy and other relevant technologies.
IDC mentioned that energy usage is expected to rebound in 2010 after a down year in 2009 which had an impact on industry-wide revenues. Also, investments in cleantech is expected to rebound as access to credit improves in 2010. A big factor in that will be the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.
Here’s my summary of the top ten predictions reviewed on the conference call:
- Energy Efficiency and Demand Response: will continue to be the “first fuel” choice for electric utilities
- Renewable Energy: Renewable capacity additions will exceed natural gas plant additions
- Energy Storage: Utility-scale stationary energy storage will have its coming out party
- Intelligent Grid: North American intelligent grid ICT spending reaches $18 billion by 2013
- Electric Vehicles: First wave of electric vehicles and accompanying charging infrastructure will emerge
- Energy Commodity Trading: Trading of energy commodities requiring IT support will recover and grow
- Sustainability: Traditional generators will focus on managing their portfolio for sustainability
- Water Management: Scarcity of clean water and availability of new technology will awaken the sleeping water market
- Smart Cities: Smart cities will emerge as proving grounds for the intelligent economy
- IT Spending: U.S. utility industry IT spending growth will accelerate dramatically
I remember back in the 90’s this industry was one of the lackluster (perhaps boring?) industries to be involved with from a technology perspective. Nothing was really happening back then. Today it is 180 degrees opposite. There is so much going on right now to bring technology to this industry. This is one exciting industry today….and I expect it will be that way for another decade or two.
For more information, IDC Insights has a bunch of resources for you.
- Link to a replay of the predictions conference call where you can listen to the 1 hour call and download slides (registration required). IDC Insights Predictions 2010: Energy – Utilities
- Watch the IDC website for the forthcoming report: Worldwide North American Utility 2010 Top 10 Predictions, # EI221538,
- IDC Energy Insights web site: www.idc-ei.com
- IDC Energy Insights community: http://idc-insights-community.com/energy
- IDC Energy Insights newsletter: "IDC Energy Insights on Utilities" and/or "IDC Energy Insights on Oil & Gas"