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Itron Inspire

Recognizing Our Customers at Itron Inspire

Awards

After a busy three days of thought provoking keynotes and informative breakout sessions, Itron Inspire 2021 wrapped up by recognizing our customers at the forefront of resourcefulness and innovation.

Farah Saeed, research director at Frost & Sullivan, took the virtual stage to present the recipients of the sixth annual Excellence in Resourcefulness Awards: The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) and Las Vegas Valley Water District (LVVWD). Their steadfast efforts to significantly improve the resourceful use of energy and water by successfully implementing modern technology highlight a strong commitment to a sustainable future.

LADWP's partnership with Itron dates back to 2012 and the latest smart grid on distribution automation is considered essential for supporting the city's ambitious goal of achieving 100% renewable electricity by 2045 and becoming carbon-free by 2035. Through this project, LADWP can automate and improve the visibility of all its circuits and feeders across its substation and down to the edge of the grid network. In return, the system will ensure proper integration of solar and storage onto their distribution power network. This state-of-the-art communication infrastructure is expected to be completed in 2022. It will serve as the backbone for enabling stakeholder access to real-time and actionable data across multiple divisions, including system operators, energy demand/supply, the outage management team, planners and engineering team. In return, this platform will ensure there is improved transparency across different divisions pertinent to grid operations.

Water resourcefulness is top of mind in Nevada, where 40% of the state is in an era of exceptional drought. LVVWD is minimizing the impact of climate change by improving its overall water management operations as part of a larger dialogue and collaborative approach. The organization is proactively identifying leaks by leveraging AMI technology and expanding its service capabilities for its customers. LVVWD  has detected 5% more water loss leaks that would have otherwise gone unnoticed without an AMI system in place and recently launched a mobile app that provides alerts such as "Notification of Continuous Flow" and "Excessive Leak Cases."

As part of the selection process, Frost & Sullivan conducted in-depth research and interviews and evaluated utilities against industry best practices and the decision criteria, including societal and business impact for each category. Indicators for societal impact included improving customer awareness and participation, enabling behavioral change to reduce waste through customer engagement and technology-driven programs, and yielding impressive waste reduction that benefits the overall served community. Indicators for business impact included drafting a clear vision to address excessive waste through technology implementation, achieving operational effectiveness as a result of a successful strategy for sustainability, and strengthening a utility's brand image as a leader for sustainability.

Next up, John Marcolini, senior vice president of Networked Solutions at Itron, presented the 2021 Itron Innovator Award to CPS Energy. The award, now in its third year, recognizes an Itron customer that has leveraged Itron’s partner enablement programs to deliver a breakthrough solution that solves challenges in energy and water efficiencies and smart communities. CPS Energy was recognized for its collaborative community leadership and smart city application pilot, which took advantage of multiple IoT sensors developed through Itron’s partner enablement program, including ambient noise, air quality, flood and parking sensors.

Itron and CPS Energy collaborated with the City of San Antonio along with Itron partners’, Rongwen, TerraGo, Tomorrow.io, Utility Systems Sciences and Services and Cleverciti, to deploy a smart city application pilot, which showcased integrations with Itron’s intelligent multi-application network and its central management software for smart cities, Streetlight.Vision. The pilot tested air quality, temperature, ambient noise, parking and flooding. Taking advantage of Itron’s services, the streetlight sensors provide real-time operational performance.

CPS Energy was also recognized for its collaboration with the San Antonio Water System (SAWS) to deploy Itron’s smart water communications modules on the same wireless network as CPS Energy’s smart meters using a Network-as-a-Service delivery model. This pilot program provides SAWS customers with the ability to track their water use in near real-time. All 2,500 residents included in the pilot are able to access their energy and water usage virtually, helping them to save money and avoid waste with features like leak detection.

If you were unable to attend this year’s event, or if you would like to review sessions, all content will be available on-demand through Nov. 5.