Glossary of Energy Terms

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A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X-Z Acronyms

Note: No entries for Y or Z.

Letter N

NARUC -- the national association of regulatory utility commissioners. An advisory council composed of governmental agencies of the fifty States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands engaged in the regulation of utilities and carriers. "The chief objective is to serve the consumer interest by seeking to improve the quality and effectiveness of public regulation in America."

NASUCA -- The National Association of Utility Consumer Advocates. NASUCA includes members from 38 states and the District of Columbia. It was formed "to exchange information and take positions on issues affecting utility rates before federal agencies, Congress and the courts.

NATURAL GAS -- Hydrocarbon gas found in the earth, composed of methane, ethane, butane, propane and other gases.

NATURAL GAS VEHICLE -- vehicles that are powered by compressed or liquefied natural gas.

NATURAL MONOPOLY -- A situation where one firm can produce a given level of output at a lower total cost than can any combination of multiple firms. Natural monopolies occur in industries which exhibit decreasing average long-run costs due to size (economies of scale). According to economic theory, a public monopoly governed by regulation is justified when an industry exhibits natural monopoly characteristics.

NCSL -- The National Conference of State Legislatures. A national advisory council which provides services to state legislatures "by bringing together information from all states to forge workable answers to complex policy questions."

NGV (NATURAL GAS VEHICLE) -- vehicles that are powered by compressed or liquefied natural gas.

NATURAL GASOLINE -- A mixture of liquids extracted from natural gas and suitable for blending with ordinary oil-derived gasoline.

NET-ZERO ENERGY -- Producing as much energy on an annual basis as one consumes on site, usually with renewable energy sources such as photovoltaics or small-scale wind turbines.

NEUTRON -- An uncharged particle found in the nucleus of every atom except that of hydrogen.

NEWTON -- A unit of force. The amount of force it takes to accelerate one kilogram at one meter per second per second.

NON-DEPLETABLE ENERGY SOURCES -- Energy which is not obtained from depletable energy sources. [See California Code of Regulations, Title 24, Section 2-5302]

NONRESIDENTIAL BUILDING -- -- any building which is heated or cooled in its interior, and is of an occupancy type other than Type H, I, or J, as defined in the Uniform Building Code, 1973 edition, as adopted by the International Conference of Building Officials.

NON-FIRM ENERGY -- Electricity that is not required to be delivered or to be taken under the terms of an electric purchase contract.

NOPR -- A Notice of Proposed Rule-making. A designation used by the FERC for some of its dockets.

NOx -- Oxides of nitrogen that are a chief component of air pollution that can be produced by the burning of fossil fuels. Also called nitrogen oxides.

NRTA - Northwest Regional Transmission Association. A subregional transmission group within the Western Regional Transmission Association.

NUCLEAR ENERGY -- Power obtained by splitting heavy atoms (fission) or joining light atoms (fusion). A nuclear energy plant uses a controlled atomic chain reaction to produce heat. The heat is used to make steam run conventional turbine generators.

NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION (NRC) -- An independent federal agency that ensures that strict standards of public health and safety, environmental quality and national security are adhered to by individuals and organizations possessing and using radioactive materials. The NRC is the agency that is mandated with licensing and regulating nuclear power plants in the United States. It was formally established in 1975 after its predecessor, the Atomic Energy Commission, was abolished.

NUG -- A non-utility generator. A generation facility owned and operated by an entity who is not defined as a utility in that jurisdictional area.

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X-Z Acronyms

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