New research shows that when a power system combines energy storage and solar power generation, the end result is greater than the sum of its parts in terms of its ability to handle peak energy demand.
That’s encouraging news for renewable energy.
“Electric utilities are tasked with ensuring they can reliably meet consumer energy demands,” says study coauthor Joseph DeCarolis, a professor of civil, construction, and environmental engineering at North Carolina State University. “Quantifying the reliability benefits of different generation sources informs where investments will be made.”
A power source’s reliability benefit is how much power a given source can be relied on to produce during times of peak demand.
“Our work here suggests that solar power can offer greater benefits to reliability than sustainable energy skeptics suggest,” says corresponding author Jeremiah Johnson, an associate professor of civil, construction, and environmental engineering.
“Investing in both solar power and energy storage systems can unlock reliability value that neither technology would provide on its own.”
For the study, which appears in the journal Renewable Energy, researchers looked at the power system in North and South Carolina to assess issues related to renewable energy and reliability.
With data on power demand and the mix of power generation sources, the researchers built computational models to assess how much power a system could expect from different sources during periods of peak energy demand.
The models allowed researchers to vary the size of solar farms in the system and the amount of energy storage in the system to determine how those changes might affect the overall reliability benefits during periods of peak demand.
“When a system combines solar and energy storage, that combination can be relied upon to provide up to 40% more power during peak demand than if you just added the output from each source,” Johnson says.
“Basically, we found that solar power generation reduces the peak load that would need to be met with stored energy, and reduces the duration of that peak demand. In effect, there is a symbiotic relationship between these technologies.”
Additional coauthors are from NC State and North Carolina Central. The North Carolina Policy Collaboratory funded the work.
Source: NC State
by Paul Hawken and Tom Steyer
In the face of widespread fear and apathy, an international coalition of researchers, professionals, and scientists have come together to offer a set of realistic and bold solutions to climate change. One hundred techniques and practices are described here—some are well known; some you may have never heard of. They range from clean energy to educating girls in lower-income countries to land use practices that pull carbon out of the air. The solutions exist, are economically viable, and communities throughout the world are currently enacting them with skill and determination. Available On Amazon
by Hal Harvey, Robbie Orvis, Jeffrey Rissman
With the effects of climate change already upon us, the need to cut global greenhouse gas emissions is nothing less than urgent. It’s a daunting challenge, but the technologies and strategies to meet it exist today. A small set of energy policies, designed and implemented well, can put us on the path to a low carbon future. Energy systems are large and complex, so energy policy must be focused and cost-effective. One-size-fits-all approaches simply won’t get the job done. Policymakers need a clear, comprehensive resource that outlines the energy policies that will have the biggest impact on our climate future, and describes how to design these policies well. Available On Amazon
by Naomi Klein
In This Changes Everything Naomi Klein argues that climate change isn’t just another issue to be neatly filed between taxes and health care. It’s an alarm that calls us to fix an economic system that is already failing us in many ways. Klein meticulously builds the case for how massively reducing our greenhouse emissions is our best chance to simultaneously reduce gaping inequalities, re-imagine our broken democracies, and rebuild our gutted local economies. She exposes the ideological desperation of the climate-change deniers, the messianic delusions of the would-be geoengineers, and the tragic defeatism of too many mainstream green initiatives. And she demonstrates precisely why the market has not—and cannot—fix the climate crisis but will instead make things worse, with ever more extreme and ecologically damaging extraction methods, accompanied by rampant disaster capitalism. Available On Amazon
From The Publisher:
Purchases on Amazon go to defray the cost of bringing you InnerSelf.comelf.com, MightyNatural.com, and ClimateImpactNews.com at no cost and without advertisers that track your browsing habits. Even if you click on a link but don't buy these selected products, anything else you buy in that same visit on Amazon pays us a small commission. There is no additional cost to you, so please contribute to the effort. You can also use this link to use to Amazon at any time so you can help support our efforts.