Endorsed by NARUC
32 CEUs are available. 11.5 WI CLEs have been granted.
Energy Utility Basics is an intensive course on the fundamental concepts critical to being conversant in today’s energy industry. Course content is updated yearly as technology, regulation, competition and markets evolve. WPUI has proudly presented this exceptional course each fall since 1983.
Course Summary: Over four and a half days, participants will receive an introduction to the electric and natural gas industries, insights into regulatory decision-making, and an analysis of the current issues facing both industries. The dedicated gas course begins Thursday at noon and continues until mid-day Friday.
Benefits: Attendees will obtain practical knowledge of the operations and technology of the natural gas and electricity industries from extraction, whether from the ground or renewables, to the customer’s bill. Course registration covers a field trip to a power plant, daily lunches and breaks, and printed course materials. University of Wisconsin Extension has made 32 CEUs available. 11.5 CLEs have been granted for attorneys practicing in Wisconsin.
Who Should Attend: The energy industry has undergone substantial changes – including changes in hiring practices. Twenty years ago, new utility staff would start out learning the ropes by working up through the ranks. In today’s fast-moving business environment, it is often advantageous to hire staff from other industries, bringing in outside talent that doesn’t yet have a working knowledge of the energy industry. Energy Utility Basics is intended for anyone working in the energy industry, including public interest groups, legislative staff, regulatory staff, state and local government personnel. The course is for energy professionals who want a better grasp of how all the technological, financial and political pieces of the energy puzzle fit together. Registration is open to the public.
What others have said:
“I came in new to the industry wanting to learn about how energy is made, distributed, and transmitted. I am leaving with a better understanding of all that and more.”
“The good mix of speakers and audience made for an excellent atmosphere to understand a complex industry from all angles.”
“I wish I could have taken this course right away when I entered the utility industry.”
“I appreciate the care in progressively building on the modules.”
“Plenty of beneficial information, good speakers.”
“As someone with only a couple years of utility experience, this was a great foundation”
“Covered as many of the topics as possible in an entertaining and informative way – could have been very boring, but it wasn’t. Nice work!”
“Excellent overview and well-planned program.”
“Delivery of complex information in an easy to digest manner.”
“I loved getting to see the operators and getting to touch and see how it all works at the power plant”
“Variety of speakers, all were knowledgeable and able to break down the subject matter for those with a limited knowledge of the industry.”
Draft Agenda 2017
October 9, Monday
Electricity: Industry Structure
|7:30-8:00||Registration and welcome coffee/tea|
|8:00-8:20||Introduction||Cara Lee Mahany Braithwait|
|8:20-9:45||Why a Regulated Monopoly?
Who’s regulated, why and how?
The federal and state perspective from the 1600s to 1985
|Enrique Bacalao Public Service Commission of Wisconsin|
|10:00-11:15||Utility Regulation from 1985 to Today
||Nate Zolik Godfrey & Khan, S.C.
|11:30-12:30||The Public Service Commission — Roles and Rules, Balance of Power
||Cynthia Smith Public Service Commission of Wisconsin|
|1:30 – 3:00||Utility Company Models – presentations and panel discussion
||Moderator: Cara Lee Mahany Braithwait
Brian Rude Dairyland Power Cooperative
Andy Onesti Manitowoc Public Utilities
|3:00 – 3:15||Break|
|3:15 – 4:00||The Independent System Operator
||Midcontinent Independent System Operator|
|4:00 – 4:15||Break|
|4:15– 5:15||Transmission-The Overlooked Connection Until 1970
||Flora Flygt Retired Utility Executive & Advisor|
October 10, Tuesday
Electricity: Industry Operations
|8:00-9:15||From Heat to Electricity —
How we make electricity in the U.S.
|Jake Blanchard UW-Madison|
|9:30-11:15||Field Identification Guide to the Electric Industry
||Ken Copp American Transmission Co.|
|11:30-12:30||A Day in the Life of a Distribution Company
||Merlin Raab WEC Energy Group – Business Services
|1:30-2:30||A Day in the Life of a Transmission Operator
||Mike Londo American Transmission Co.|
|2:45 – 3:30||Performance-based Regulation: For the past 100 years, we have used a cost of service regulatory model. It used the costs of building infrastructure to cover the costs for the services that kept the lights on (reliability) at a competitively efficient, affordable cost. And for this goal, it has worked well. Now, with shrinking sales, less need for large infrastructure investments, and the additional goal of adding sustainability to the utility responsibility, it falls short. Today the regulatory/utility goal is to provide energy with a competitively efficient, affordable, sustainable, and cleaner portfolio. Performance-based regulation is one route to this end.||Mark Lowry Pacific Economics Group|
|3:30||Pick up cookies & a beverage on the way out to the bus!|
|3:30 – 3:45||Travel to Charter Street Heating and Cooling Plant|
|3:45 – 5:30||Field Trip: Power Plant Tour|
October 11, Wednesday
Ratemaking for Electric and Gas Companies
|8:00-9:15||What Drives Utility Stock Prices?||Steve Kihm Seventhwave|
|9:30-10:45||Basics of Rate Setting
||Bruce Chapman Christensen Associates Energy Consulting
|11:00-12:30||Basics of Rate Setting
|1:30-2:45||Basics of Rate Setting: Conclusion
|3:00-3:45||Strategies for Addressing Fixed Cost Recovery Issues||Dan Hansen Christensen Associates Energy Consulting|
|3:45 – 4:00||Break|
|4:00 – 4:45||One Utility’s Response
to Changing Customer Expectations
|Greg Bollom Madison Gas & Electric|
October 12, Thursday
Electricity/Gas: Environmental Issues & Gas Markets
|7:30 – 8:00||Welcome coffee/tea|
|8:00 – 8:45||Nuclear Future — The Base Load of the Future?||Jake Blanchard|
|8:45 – 9:00||Break|
|9:00 –12:30||Getting Work Done with a Smaller Carbon Footprint and Enabling Technologies
Moderated by Rich Hackner, GDS Associates
|12:30 – 1:30||Lunch|
|1:30 – 3:30||Gas Markets – How Do Traders Evaluate Options?
||Valerie Wood Energy Solutions Inc.|
|3:30 – 3:45||Break|
|3:45-4:30||Legal Issues Facing the Utility Industry||Brian Potts Perkins Coie|
October 13, Friday
Gas: Status and Operations
|8:00 – 10:30||What Everyone Ought to Know About Gas
||Alan Carroll UW-Madison|
|10:30 – 10:45||Break|
|10:45 – 11:45||A Day in the Life of a Gas Company
||Steve Weston Alliant Energy
Matt Longmier Alliant Energy
Institute Member — $1,450.00
Non-Member — $2,250.00
Government (Non-Utility) — $700.00
Non-Profit, Member — $1,200.00
Non-Profit, Non-Member — $1,550.00
Your registration fee includes printed materials, meals/breaks and access to materials on our website post-program. Certificates for the CEUs and CLE credits will be available upon request.
Accommodations: Graduate Madison
Room Rate: $169 – $179
Deluxe Rooms includes amenities such as transportation to and from the Madison Airport, hot breakfast and more.
Parking is available for hotel guests.