Five Reasons To Be Bullish Long-term on Renewable Energy Compliance with climate goals Lower costs for wind and solar Acceptance of renewables by utilities and consumers Smart grid interplay Changing utility business models
Public Policy Consulting Renewable Electricity Futures Study (REF) Exploration of High-Penetration Renewable Electricity Futures Available at NREL.gov
Public Policy Consulting NRELs REF Findings Renewable electricity generation is more than adequate to supply 80% of total U.S. electricity generation in 2050 while meeting electricity demand on an hourly basis in every region of the country. Increased electric system flexibility can come from a portfolio of supply- and demand-side options, like flexible conventional generation, grid storage, new transmission, more responsive loads, and changes in power system operations. The are multiple paths using renewables that result in deep reductions in electric sector greenhouse gas emissions and water use. The direct incremental cost with high renewable generation is comparable to costs of other clean energy scenarios.
Public Policy Consulting Helpful fact: The US summer peak electrical use is around 800 GW.
Public Policy Consulting With incentives No incentives CO 2 costs Notes Unadjusted 2010 cost estimates were used for consistency Costs for wind and photovoltaics have fallen sharply in last two years (faster than these 2010 estimates) Cost of nuclear power has risen post-Fukushima (more than these 2010 estimates)
Public Policy Consulting NRELs estimate of continued cost reductions for wind energy
Question: How do we explain the variations in outcomes between NJ and GA between the US and Germany Answer: Policy; regulation; industry structure; incentives.
Public Policy Consulting A Recent Hart Associates Poll
Public Policy Consulting Compressed Air Energy Storage (CAES)
Public Policy Consulting The Evolving Utility Business Model Multiple threats to business as usual Utilities must adapt in order to grow (survive) We need to change the regulatory incentives to reward utilities for pursuing societal goals Regulation needs to produce greater firm efficiency Expect a new regulatory compact to emerge