Global power, utilities survey on disruptive forces

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PwC released its Annual Global Power & Utilities Survey focused on the disruptive forces — distributed power generation, technology changes and a new breed of customers — that are putting the traditional power utilities' business model under threat.

According to PwC’s survey, most power utilities envision a future where demand growth will be met by a mixture of centralized and distributed generation. As global demand for electricity continues to grow, well-positioned companies will need to adapt their business models to respond to a power environment that could be transformed by these changes.

Distributed generation in particular could set the scene for widespread industry transformation. Some key findings among North American respondents:

·         90 percent believe it’s likely or highly likely that increasing levels of distributed generation will force utilities to significantly change their business models.

·         70 percent see distributed generation as an opportunity, as opposed to 30 percent viewing it as a threat.

·         The top two barriers for companies that are investing in new large-scale generation are obtaining finance and the inability to recover the cost of new generation via regulated energy tariffs.

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