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Capitalizing on the Evolving Power Sector: Policies for a Modern and Reliable U.S. Electric Grid

The U.S. electric power sector faces a significant transition over the next decade, with implications for the cost, reliability, and environmental impacts of the electricity supply.

Specifically, economic trends and state and federal energy and environmental policies will continue to increase the share of natural gas and renewable energy in the generation mix. This ongoing shift provides an important opportunity to consider policies and institutional structures that help the electric grid adapt to changes in market conditions, policy, and technology in ways that enhance system reliability and maintain affordability.

This report provides findings and recommendations from the Bipartisan Policy Center’s (BPC) Electric Grid Initiative, a year- long effort to develop policy recommendations that enhance the efficiency and reliability of the U.S. electric grid. BPC convened a diverse and bipartisan task force of stakeholders from energy companies, public utility commissions (PUCs), regional transmission organizations (RTOs), academia, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs). The task force developed recommendations in four broad policy areas: (1) encouraging efficient transmission and distribution investment, (2) advancing planning and operational coordination across jurisdictions, (3) enabling a more flexible and resilient system, and (4) monitoring and enhancing operational reliability.

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