Grid operators warn of electricity shortage amid switch to renewables: Report
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Electric-grid operators across the country are warning of the possibility of blackouts as companies try to convert them into green energy sources.
“As we move forward, we need to know that when you install a solar panel or a wind turbine, it’s not like a thermal resource,” MISO chief executive John Beer told the Wall Street Journal in a report on Sunday.
Gas prices are rising out of reach
Extreme heat and fires in summer could cause power shortages in California, state grid operator WSJK said. Midwest power deficits MISO may face similar problems with caution which could lead to disruption.
The problem is growing across the country as many conventional and nuclear power plants are retiring for renewable energy sources, but the plants are going offline faster than renewable energy and can retain battery storage.
Wind and solar farms are one of the most popular forms of renewable energy production, but their lack of capacity to produce energy 24/7 means that some of their energy needs to be stored in batteries for later use. But as improved battery storage continues to evolve, operators fear it is not happening fast enough to replace retired plants.
The risk of disruptions has increased this summer, supply chain problems and inflation are slowing. Developers can get the materials needed to build renewable energy farms.
“Every market in the world is trying to deal with the same problem,” Brad Jones, interim chief executive of the Texas Electric Reliability Council, told WSJ. “We’re all trying to find ways to use our renewable resources as much as possible … and at the same time make sure we have enough transmissible generation to manage reliability.”
But others have argued for slowing down the pace of taking traditional plants offline.
“We need to make sure we have enough new resources and work in progress,” Mark Rothleder, chief operating officer of the California Independent Systems Operator, told WSJ.
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