Navigant Research Blog

Advanced Energy 2017 Report Shows the Future Is Here: Part 2

Dexter Gauntlett — April 25, 2017

While there are competing visions for the future of US energy policy, Advanced Energy Economy (AEE) has built a strong coalition of businesses in support of its vision of US energy policy—advanced energy—defined as “making the global energy system more secure, clean and affordable.”

This blog post is the second in a two-part series covering the key findings of the Advanced Energy Now 2017 Market Report, in its 6th year of publication in partnership with AEE. Navigant Research provides the market data and trend stories in the report.

The report offers a great way for readers to get a glimpse into several of the key trends affecting the global energy landscape covered in depth via Navigant Research syndicated reports, data services, and custom research.

The following are three of the 2017 Market Report key findings:

  • New business model innovation: Evolving energy consumer demands and the increasing ability of customers to exercise choice in a variety of ways are also accelerating a shift toward what Navigant Research calls the Energy Cloud. Customers are increasingly focused on engaging in the generation, purchase, and sale of energy (see the section, “Corporate Procurement of Renewable Energy Gets Creative”). If appropriately incentivized, these also can provide other services such as balancing, voltage support, and voluntary load management, and address broad industry goals of greater efficiency and resilience (see “New York REV Demo Projects Point Toward 21st Century Electricity System”). Meanwhile, a similar transformation is occurring in transportation, as discussed in the “Car Sharing, Electrification, and Automation are Converging into a New Mobility System” section.
  • Infrastructure for the future: replacing, retrofitting, and digitization: The supply and pricing of incumbent fuels and technologies will continue to affect future advanced energy market growth. For example, low oil prices affect natural gas vehicle sales and infrastructure (see the “Natural Gas Fueling Stations Continue Slow Buildout” section). On the other hand, smart transmission, distribution automation systems, and advanced metering infrastructure systems are now mainstream as the digitization of the electric-mechanical infrastructure moves forward. As a result, the grid will increasingly resemble a more sophisticated—but also more resilient and distributed—networked system, as discussed in the “Energy Storage Becomes the Glue for Virtual Power Plants” section.
  • The next frontier is already here: A number of industries reached tipping points or otherwise hit major milestones in 2016. For example, the first offshore wind project in the United States reached completion off the East Coast (see “Rhode Island Lays Foundation for US Offshore Wind”). With a 1,000% increase in revenue since 2011, the plug-in EV market is now eating into the traditional hybrid EV market in the United States and could surpass it in terms of revenue in 2017 (see “Plug-in Vehicle Options Expand, Stimulating Rapid Growth”). Meanwhile, the power of national policy priorities in China, the United States, and Japan continues to stimulate markets for solar PV, biofuels (see “Biofuels Meet Targets”), hydrogen vehicles and infrastructure (“Can Toyota, Honda, and Hyundai Make Hydrogen Work?”), and combined heat and power (CHP; see the section, “CHP provides Onsite Power Generation for Industrial Customers, and Others”).

2017 is shaping up to be another major year for advanced energy market growth—and Navigant Research expects the trends identified in this year’s Advanced Energy Now Market Report to accelerate.

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