Chuck Ross

Freelance Writer

Chuck Ross is a freelance writer and editor who has covered building and energy technologies for a range of industry publications and websites for more than 25 years. He specializes in building and energy technologies, along with electric-utility business issues.

Articles by Chuck Ross

September 2016
The latest electricity sales data and forecasts from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) are just the latest indicator that energy efficiency works. Even as the economy ticked up (albeit, moderately) over the last year, electricity sales have declined, falling 2.3 percent in April 2016 over 2015. READ MORE
August 2016
We began coverage of our biennial Profile of the Electrical Contractor survey last month with a discussion of demographics and trends in the age of today’s electrical contractors (ECs) and their firms, along with the types of work our readers are doing. READ MORE
August 2016
Solar photovoltaic (PV) panels have an impressive lifespan. Manufacturers often estimate it at 25 years, though many units installed in the 1980s are still going strong today. At some point, though, even the hardiest of these panels will fail. READ MORE
  • More gray matter

July 2016
It’s that time again when we call on expert pollsters to help us learn more about our readers and the work they are doing in the field. More than 2,400 of you responded to our questionnaire earlier this year, through snail mail or online, describing the work you did in 2015. READ MORE
July 2016
Aging coal plants are closing across the nation, along with a growing number of nuclear units, and utility planners are increasingly concerned about how best to replace this shuttered generation capacity. While improving energy efficiency has proven an effective and affordable alternative to building new power plants, this approach has its own cost in lower returns to investor-owned utilities. READ MORE
June 2016
Renewable energy’s increasing importance to the U.S. power generation portfolio is upending many aspects of an electrical system that has remained essentially unchanged for more than a century. The transition from fossil fuels to wind and solar resources is reshuffling traditional business models for financing new energy generation. READ MORE
June 2016
In the early days of electrical generation and transmission, much hullabaloo was made over the respective value of alternating current (AC) versus direct current (DC) technology, and the reigning geniuses of the 1880s, Nikola Tesla and Thomas Edison, waged a metaphorical war over the issue. READ MORE
May 2016
Once a bedroom-only requirement, arc-fault 
circuit interrupters (AFCIs)­—either as breakers or receptacles—today are required in almost all areas of the home. The 2014 edition of the National 
Electrical Code (NEC), in effect in 27 states as of March 2016, has added kitchens, laundry areas and dormitory rooms to the list of living spaces in which such protection is necessary. READ MORE
May 2016
The press has had much to say about the death spirals on the way for the 
electric-utility industry, thanks to the rapid proliferation of rooftop solar panels and other distributed-energy resources. The thought is customer-owned generation could upend current income streams and place unforeseen stress on local distribution systems that are not designed for a two-way electron flow. READ MORE

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