Smart Energy Voices- Episode 34
Decarbonizing with Integrated Energy Management
In this important episode of Smart Energy Voices, host John Failla speaks with Scott Hart, Vice President and General Manager of NRG Business - Texas to discuss how integrated energy supply and demand management strategies, including the deployment of DERs, can effectively help large power users achieve their decarbonization goals. NRG has been actively involved in working with customers on integrated energy management programs. You’ll learn a lot from this timely conversation.
You will want to hear this episode if you are interested in...
- Scott Hart’s role at NRG [02:00]
- Why is there a movement towards bold, decarbonization goals? [04:00]
- Is decarbonization that different from previous goals? [06:00]
- Implications to consider [07:14]
- Energy and sustainability working together [10:53]
- How is NRG meeting marketplace needs? [12:24]
- DERs role for large power users [14:41]
The decarbonization shift
In the last 20 years, the environmental movement has been pushing towards electricity. More recently, the ESG movement has brought a greater level of commitment. About four or five years ago, Fortune 100 companies began becoming more involved with renewable projects. Tax subsidies have been very effective in encouraging involvement. Meanwhile, as conventional sources of energy generation have come under economic pressure, genuine commitment has picked up in intensity. Most recently, there has been a monumental shift towards decarbonization. Renewables have been proven to be economical and meet environmental objectives - even vast industrial plants from the past are being replaced with large-scale renewables. The grid is being modernized, and there’s no turning back.
NRG then and now
Scott Hart has worked for over 30 years in utilities or the deregulated power or gas market. He has experience in the commodity sides and working with energy efficiency, performance contracting, distributed energy, resources, and demand response programs. Since 2004 he's worked with renewables embedded inside of retail products. Currently, he's the Vice President and General Manager of NRG Business - Texas. NRG prides itself on embracing the opportunities that competitive markets and customer choice provide them with to innovate. They do that with renewables and on the demand side. Their overall strategy is to help customers understand how to buy and use energy most effectively, considering their goals and budgets.
NRG is closely familiar with environmental goals. The company has a goal of a 50% reduction in its carbon footprint by 2025 and 100% by 2050. This change is massive from where the company was when Scott started with NRG. At that time, they were a top-5 polluter. They've since pivoted by committing to working with customers on sustainable solutions.
Creating sustainable energy goals
What are the implications that energy and sustainability managers should take into consideration? Primarily, they shouldn’t have to sacrifice their budget to achieve goals. Companies are using more of a demand-side approach by looking for opportunities to help supply the reserve margin and guard against scarcity issues. The tools, techniques, and technology are already available for decarbonizing. The goal now is to create the correct economic environment.
The electricity business is still very local. Having this local expertise and knowledge comes into play because not everything works as well in specific markets. There is an economic trade in one market that wouldn’t work in another. At NRG, they’re fortunate to have coverage that allows them to have both local expertise and the ability to scale. Using this ability is how NRG provides technologies that give their customers the power to think critically about their electricity.
Resources & People Mentioned in the Episode
Connect with Scott Hart
Scott Hart Vice President / General Manager, NRG Business - Texas Scott Hart is the Vice President / General Manager of NRG Business – Texas and leads an integrated sales organization comprised of commercial, industrial, and wholesale origination sales teams. Scott is leading the team to become a competitive participant in many retail markets to offer customized solutions and services to customers in the complex energy industry. Scott has more than 30 years of utility and competitive retail executive experience. Prior to leading the NRG Supply team, Scott was the President of Commercial Services for Green Mountain Energy before NRG acquired it in 2010. Scott has a Bachelor of Science degree from Tarleton State University and an MBA from Baylor University.
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