MANAGING POWER Direct [March 6, 2009]

BPL’s Second Act

Originally seen as promising deep and widespread access to the Internet service provider market, broadband over power line (BPL) technology has failed to deliver. Today’s options for deploying BPL are more numerous but, to date, they involve niche markets.

Flu Pandemic Could Cause Blackouts

No utility can fully prepare for power outages caused by severe weather, but there are things that power generators could do to prevent severe disruptions to power supplies that could easily result from a flu pandemic.

SCR Coming to Diesel Vehicles

Power plant managers are familiar with selective catalytic reduction (SCR), a technology to reduce emissions of nitrogen oxides from fossil-fueled generating plants. Starting in 2010, SCR technology, using a urea reagent, will also be required on new diesel-powered vehicles in utility fleets, ranging from light-duty pickups to 18-wheelers.

Trend: Power Industry Layoffs  

Layoffs in the wake of the economic crash dive have begun to hit the power business. Here are some links to announcements related to layoffs that directly affect the people who make, distribute, and buy electricity:

Uranium Prices Fall with Those of Other Commodities

Market watchers predict that uranium prices will remain low in the short term. But low prices don’t necessarily mean that the fuel’s sales will increase.

Utilities Survive Credit Woes, So Far

So far, U.S. electricity generators have managed to survive the current credit slump and financial collapse, but their viability could suffer if the economy continues to deteriorate and credit markets remain tight.