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Development of Investment Planning Models for UK Wind and Solar Fleets

Core Concepts
Wind and solar generation in the UK may only supply 70% of electrical demand by 2035, leading to residual carbon dioxide emissions.
The paper discusses the development of investment planning models for wind and solar fleets in the UK. It highlights the challenges faced by governments in predicting future energy demand and balancing supply. The Compound Model is introduced to analyze wind and solar fleet efficiencies, emphasizing the limitations of excess generation and curtailment. The study predicts that wind and solar generation may only meet 70% of electricity demand by 2035, resulting in significant carbon dioxide emissions that cannot be addressed.
Wind and solar generation will only be able to supply about 70% of electrical demand. National Grid advised that increasing wind and solar fleets led to curtailment since 2017. A government target aims for 50 GW offshore capacity by 2030. The Compound Model calculates Incremental Wind Efficiency (IWE) and Incremental Solar Efficiency (ISE). An Investment Planning Table was created based on IWE values for different scenarios.
"Steady state analyses are unable to address issues like excess generation from wind and solar fleets." "The Compound Model provides insights into dynamic interactions between wind, solar generations, and the electricity system." "The Investment Lookup Tables offer a means to calculate economically justified wind and solar generation."

Deeper Inquiries

What alternative strategies could be implemented to address the limitations of wind and solar generation

To address the limitations of wind and solar generation, alternative strategies can be implemented. One approach is to focus on enhancing grid flexibility through demand response programs, energy storage systems, and smart grid technologies. By integrating these solutions, excess renewable energy can be stored during peak production times and utilized when needed, reducing curtailment rates. Additionally, investing in interconnection infrastructure to balance supply across regions with varying weather patterns can optimize the utilization of renewable resources.

How might advancements in energy storage technology impact the deployment of renewable energy sources

Advancements in energy storage technology have the potential to significantly impact the deployment of renewable energy sources. Improved battery storage systems can enhance grid reliability by storing excess renewable energy for later use when demand is high or generation is low. This capability reduces curtailment rates and enables a higher penetration of intermittent renewables like wind and solar power into the grid. Furthermore, advancements in long-duration storage technologies such as pumped hydroelectric storage or thermal energy storage could provide cost-effective solutions for balancing fluctuating renewable generation.

How can policymakers ensure a balance between renewable energy goals and grid stability

Policymakers play a crucial role in ensuring a balance between renewable energy goals and grid stability. One key strategy is to implement effective regulatory frameworks that incentivize investments in both renewable energy projects and grid infrastructure upgrades simultaneously. By promoting coordinated planning between renewables integration and grid modernization efforts, policymakers can ensure that the transition towards clean energy sources does not compromise system reliability. Additionally, fostering collaboration among stakeholders including utilities, regulators, developers, and consumers can facilitate holistic decision-making processes that prioritize both sustainability objectives and grid stability requirements.
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