Luthin Associates

Luthin Associates

Founded in 1994, Luthin Associates provides energy advisory services to all industry sectors in the New York Tri-state region and beyond. In 2019, Luthin Associates joined forces with 5, an innovative energy advisory firm comprised of energy innovators, commodity traders, analysts, engineers, and former energy supplier executives. As part of the 5 family of companies, Luthin Associates provides strategic advice on energy-related matters including procurement, demand-side management, rate optimization, regulatory intervention, benchmarking, bill auditing, RFP management, sustainability planning services, renewable power, and distributed generation.

Recent posts by Luthin Associates

3 min read

Assimilating Distributed Energy Resources into Competitive Power Markets

By Luthin Associates on January 10, 2018

Imagine a friendly Borg that, instead of forcing assimilation, says, “Come join our Collective, and let us profit together.” That’s essentially what the New York Public Service Commission (NY PSC) is saying through its Reforming the Energy Vision (REV) process. Distributed Energy Resources (DERs), such as on-site solar and combined-heat-and-power (CHP) plants, would participate in local grids to produce and trade power.

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Topics: Newsletters Resiliency
1 min read

Factoid: Exploring the Possibility of Solar Energy From the Moon

By Luthin Associates on January 10, 2018

We have often wondered, ‘Does life exist on other planets?’ Although we may not have infinite answers to extraterrestrial life on other planets, one concept that does exist out there is potential energy. Specifically, the possibility for lunar-based solar power (LSP).

According to a 2017 Forbes article, the concept of LSP involves developing solar power collecting stations on the Moon’s surface, which would convert sunlight into electricity and be wirelessly transmitted to Earth. Supporting this concept of a more sustainable source of clean electricity by using solar panels to collect sunlight on the Moon is retired University of Houston physicist, David Criswell.

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Topics: Newsletters
1 min read

Luthin Associates Helps Clarkson Avenue Microgrid Project Win

By Luthin Associates on August 10, 2017

Luthin Associates recently partnered with a host of other firms and ConEdison in the NY Prize competition, a first-in-the-nation challenge to help communities create microgrids.

A microgrid is a standalone energy system that is capable of operating on its own in the event of a power outage. One purpose of the project is to create a network of users who rely on the same microgrid. This community of microgrids will allow for local power generation using clean and efficient energy sources including, but not limited to, wind, solar, and combined heat and power (CHP).

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Topics: Markets Clients NYISO Case Studies Sustainability Resiliency
2 min read

The Brains Behind The Savings

By Luthin Associates on July 18, 2017

The Scarecrow had enough sense to know that he needed a brain, but what about your building? The impending rollout of distributed energy resource (DER) tariffs and power pricing suggests that many facilities may soon need their own “transplants.”

According to the latest building survey data from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), almost 15% of U.S. commercial and industrial (C&I) facilities are equipped with some form of “energy management and control system” which refers to  an energy management system (EMS), building management system (BMS), or building automation system (BAS). Several independent studies by agencies, such as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), have found that such systems help facilities cut their annual energy use by 10-20% relative to comparable sites lacking them.

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Topics: Newsletters
2 min read

Is Courage Needed to Pursue DER?

By Luthin Associates on July 18, 2017

Energy efficiency and renewable projects are no longer skipping down the same yellow brick road as they were this time last year. Similar to the Cowardly Lion, some are inching courageously forward despite doubts from customers and the industry, while others have stepped off the road until the way forward becomes clearer.

Changes at both the federal and state levels are creating a less certain future, but Dorothy assures me that the basic reasons for pursuing distributed energy resource (DER) projects remain viable, regardless of which federal policies remain intact.

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Topics: Newsletters Resiliency
4 min read

What's Going on Behind the Curtain?

By Luthin Associates on July 18, 2017

The Wizard told Dorothy and her friends many tales of his amazing powers, but a strong breeze blew away his credibility when it pushed aside the curtain, revealing those tricks as little more than noise and smoke. Such may be the case with energy account auditors, they may claim savings based more on a customer’s misplaced trust of the auditor than on any real financial wizardry.

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Topics: Newsletters
3 min read

Potential Impacts of Climate Change on Energy Costs

By Luthin Associates on January 18, 2017

Weather conditions, such as occasional daily and annual variations in temperature and moisture, have obvious temporary effects on energy bills. Heating costs rise when it is cold and dry, while cooling costs rise when it is hot and humid. Weather changes associated with climate change are expected to have long-term permanent impacts on those costs by causing weather extremes and changes to how power is produced.

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Topics: Newsletters Resiliency
3 min read

Riding the Weather Roller Coaster

By Luthin Associates on January 18, 2017

Climate change may gradually alter the landscape of energy production like tectonic shifts, but seasonal weather variations yield much shorter and obvious changes, a bit like riding a roller coaster. During the winter of 2015-16, much of the U.S. rode it to the warmest winter on record. In the Northeast, December 2015 had 27% fewer heating degree-days (HDD) than the 30-year average, while January-February saw HDDs 12-17% below normal. Two years before, we had the Polar Vortex winter, one of the coldest on record. Such short term variations cause ripple effects on energy pricing that may be felt for a year or more thereafter.

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Topics: Newsletters
3 min read

Impacts of Near-Term State and Federal Energy Policies Related to climate

By Luthin Associates on January 18, 2017

With the election of Donald Trump, federal and state energy policies may sharply diverge in the near future. Some states, such as New York and California, are trying to reduce carbon emissions, while President-elect Trump appears to have other priorities.  Trump’s campaign proposals are preliminary, but a few general directions are clear. Here is how those divergent strategies and transition plans may impact energy policy.

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Topics: Newsletters
1 min read

Factoid: Supercritical Solutions

By Luthin Associates on January 18, 2017

As we look at opportunities to impact climate change, out-of-the box thinking may help us bridge the gap until fossil fuel plants are out of the picture. Those of you who enjoy the beach may have noticed   the “Fudgie – Wudgie” guy (that is what we called him in the 20th century) selling ice cream on the beach out of shopping bags or pushing a cart. Rather than using ice which will not last the full day, he uses a solid form of carbon dioxide (CO2) known as dried ice. Did you know that CO2 also occurs in liquid form? Well, somewhat.

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Topics: Newsletters