It seems that distributed power generation and storage is on everyone’s mind right now after the power outages to 4.3 million people in the mid-Atlantic region as well as the weekend problems at Amazon Web Services which impacted users of Instagram, Pinterest and Netflix. Being able to generate and store power off the grid does not insulate us from outages but does provide a powerful backup option that has driven folks like Apple and eBay to install sizable fuel cell facilities at their data centers. And where some of this is heading is a place where the distributed power isn’t the backup, it’s the primary, leaving the utility as the backup or the complimentary power source. If the distributed dream really took hold, this could be a real issue for utilities as their customers would start to expect them to maintain a solid infrastructure while buying much less power or worse, customers wanting to sell excess power back to the grid as happens in California’s net metering program. Any way you slice it, both consumers and corporations are thinking about new options.