Electricity, no matter where it comes from or how it is produced, is fundamental to life in the 21st century. Access to electricity provides us with life’s most basic necessities. Yet much of the world remains in the dark. One of the world’s regions left furthest behind during this electricity evolution is Sub-Saharan Africa.
Price declines in residential solar and battery systems like Tesla’s Powerwall mean solar-plus-battery systems will soon be found in homes and businesses at the grid’s edge around the country. But what role will utilities play in the fast-approaching storage shift?
America’s power sector is undergoing a dramatic transformation, challenging regulators to make sure policy keeps up with technological innovation, often leaving utilities in a tumultuous position – but a new set of policies can put us on the path toward a cleaner, more affordable, and more reliable future.
Are higher carbon prices a good thing? The answer could be yes. On May 21, California completed its eleventh carbon allowance auction, the third joint auction with Quebec, which has linked its cap-and-trade program with California’s.
The time has come to optimize the grid. And the need is particularly acute at the edge of system – on the distribution side of the grid. But grid operators have yet to capitalize on the value of optimization because regulations and power markets have fallen behind the technology.
Policymakers rely heavily on quantitative analysis to understand how to manage rapid changes in the power sector, and quantitative analysis (particularly forward-looking projections) relies heavily on underlying assumptions. The quality and breadth of these assumptions are crucial to good decisions.
In the past, consistent load growth meant steady capital expenditures and stable returns on equity for utility shareholders. But today, the trends traditionally driving consistent load growth are being disrupted by rooftop solar, energy efficiency, and changing consumer preferences.
Energy Innovation reviewed the scientific literature on low-carbon cities and sustainable urban development. Our conclusion: compact, walkable, and transit-oriented development creates sustainable, healthy, and economically vibrant cities that deliver a high quality of life to residents.
Last week, representatives from China’s national Energy Research Institute, the State Grid Energy Research Institute, and others released a new study envisioning a nation powered by 57% renewables in 2030, growing to 86% renewables by 2050, all at the same time as China’s economy grows sevenfold.
Several market operators have instituted capacity markets to bridge the gap between revenue available from energy markets and the all-in cost of desired capacity. But will they deliver the outcomes needed for the energy system transition?