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My research is equal parts power systems analysis, financial risk management, hydrology and environmental science. I am interested in some of the big changes occurring in the electric power industry:

  • Market deregulation 
  • Integration of renewable energy
  • Horizontal hydraulic fracturing (fracking)
  • Tougher plant emissions standards
  • Changes in the hydrological cycle
  • Increased use of distributed resources

I study how these changes alter the operations and financial outlook of electric power utilities. I also look at how they ultimately have a cascading effect on water resources and environmental flows below dams.

I also study environmental financial risk management, i.e., the use of risk transfer agreements like insurance or derivatives to limit entities’ exposure to damaging weather or climate events. My research focuses on the financial exposure of electric power utilities to drought and the design of cost-effective mechanisms for hedging against this risk.

I’m also interested in policies surrounding disruptive technology in the electric power industry, especially distributed generation and storage technologies, which have the potential to impact the conventional utility model itself.

Please feel free to navigate through the menu topics to learn more about different projects I have finished or am currently working on.

-Jordan (jdkern@live.unc.edu)