Search Results for 'energy storage'

January 27, 2021 RAEL Lunch: “Charting innovation in energy storage”

Dan Kammen will lead  the RAEL lunch this week where we will focus on both materials science and operational innovations in energy storage, both focused on l0ng-term energy storage (a project we are doing with Prof. Sarah Kurtz at UC Merced, Prof. Noah Kittner at U. of North Carolina, and Prof. Patricia Hidalgo-Gonzalez of UC San Diego). We will also focus on the interactions of storage technology designs and markets, as highlighted in the reading for this session, the report we just issues with Accenture: You can read the report summary and download it here: click here. and for references the link is: https://www.accenture.com/us-en/insights/utilities/energy-storage-net-zero-path  

RAEL Lunch (9/​30/​2020), Alan Lamont, “Innovations in energy storage for a carbon-​​neutral economy”

Topic:
In looking ahead to entirely decarbonizing the electric generation system, there is a debate about the use of nuclear generation.  One school of thought argues that nuclear will be essential to successful decarbonization, while the other feels that this can be done entirely using renewable technologies, essentially wind and solar.  This research investigates the role and value of using nuclear generation in decarbonizing the electric generation system.  Along with generation, however, storage technologies will be needed.  This study also compares the value of using batteries (expensive but efficient) to the use of ammonia (quite inefficient, but very cheap per unit of energy).  Based on the Capacity Expansion Model, the study develops an analytical function to evaluate the marginal cost of carbon reduction under various scenarios of primary generation (with and without nuclear) and storage technologies (with batteries or with ammonia).  The behaviors of the generators and storage determine the different components of this equation.  Illustrating these behaviors gives us insight as to the role of nuclear and different types of storage in decarbonizing the system.
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Biography:
 Alan graduated from Stanford University in 1970 with a Master’s degree in geotechnical engineering.  As a civil engineer he worked in heavy construction in Alaska and Vietnam,  Peace Corps in Venezuela in dam design, and in the Bay Area in earthquake analysis.  He returned to Stanford and completed a PhD in Engineering Economic systems in 1983.  He joined Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in 1987,  working  energy system economics, developing and applying modeling platforms to evaluate policies and technologies for energy generation and storage.  He was also active in risk analyses  for nuclear materials production and waste disposal.  He is currently retired, but continues to work in energy systems economics to better understand strategies for reducing carbon emissions from the energy system.

RAEL Lunch — November 14, Sara Mulhauser, “Do utility ownership structures impact energy storage diffusion rates?”

Mulhauser Sara is an architect who delved into distributed generation while developing fuel cell projects for Bloom Energy. She became interested in the energy industry in general, and specifically the regulatory and finance conditions that make markets more open to uptake of innovative technologies. While her focus is in energy, she is also interested in how other major infrastructure areas are similar and different with respect to technology uptake. Sara has a BA in Architecture from Berkeley.

Energy storage deployment and innovation for the clean energy transition

This publication website supports the new paper, in press at Nature Energy, titled: Energy storage deployment and innovation for the clean energy transition as a site where users can download the Excel versions of the data sets used i that paper, whose authors Noah Kittnera,b, Felix Lillb,c and Daniel M. Kammen*a,b,d a Energy and Resources Group, UC Berkeley, Berkeley, CA, USA b Renewable and Appropriate Energy Laboratory, UC Berkeley, Berkeley, CA, USA c Center for Digital Technology and Management, TU Munich, Munich, Germany d Goldman School of Public Policy, UC Berkeley, Berkeley, CA, USA give permission for open (but cited) use of these materials.

Forbes: China: Electric Vehicle-​​To-​​Grid Technology Could Solve Renewable Energy Storage Problem

http://www.forbes.com/sites/jeffmcmahon/2015/04/21/china-electric-vehicle-to-grid-tech-could-solve-renewable-energy-storage-problem/ China could use an expected boom in electric vehicles to stabilize a grid that depends heavily on wind and solar energy, officials from an influential Chinese government planning agency said Monday in Washington D.C. “In the future we think the electricity vehicle could be the big contribution for power systems’ stability, reliability,” said Wang Zhongying, director of the China National Renewable Energy Center and deputy director general of the Energy Research Institute at China’s National Development and Reform Commission. The Chinese do not see the cost of renewable energy as a significant obstacle to its widespread adoption, Wang told a lunchtime gathering at Resources for the Future, a non-partisan environmental research organization in the Capitol. “The biggest challenge for renewable energy development is not economic issues, it is technical issues. Variability. Variability is the biggest issue for us,” said Wang, who explained variability like so: “When we have wind we have electricity; when we have sun we have electricity. No wind and no sun, no electricity.” But if the Chinese deploy enough electric vehicles—which could mean up to five million new electric vehicles in Beijing alone—the array of distributed batteries could collect energy when the sun is shining or the wind is blowing and feed it back to the grid when the skies are dark and the air is still. Wang directed a study released this week, the “China 2050 High Renewable Energy Penetration Scenario and Roadmap Study,”  which plots a route for China to drastically reduce reliance on coal, derive 85 percent of electricity from renewables, and cut greenhouse gas emissions 60 percent by mid-century . The study gets there by relying on what has become known as Vehicle-to-Grid technology, which has emerged as almost a surprise side effect of inexpensive solar panels and clean-energy policies in places like California and Germany. The Chinese have been watching the same developments, the report reveals, as clean energy experts in the West like Daniel Kammen, who described unexpected effects of the solar-energy boom last week in an appearance at the University of Chicago.

“Massive amounts of solar power coming online in California, in Bangladesh, in Germany, in Italy, has meant the world has been turned on its head,” Kammen said.

“Now in places with the greenest energy policies, there is a huge peak in afternoon power on the grid, exactly where power used to be the most expensive and the dirtiest,” he said. “We actually want people to charge up now in the late afternoon. It sounds very chaotic, it’s not what we thought at all, but in fact it represents what low-cost solar is now bringing to many parts of the world.” Electricity consumers can store this abundant afternoon energy until supply goes down and demand goes up and then sell it back to the grid. And if they own electric vehicles, they needn’t buy extra equipment to do so. “You can put a big battery in the basement of your home or business, but you can also have your electric vehicle, with its mobile storage system that you drive around and use as your car. They’re called Nissan Leafs, they’re called Chevy Volts, they’re called Teslas, they’re called Priuses, they have a variety of names. And now you can sell power back to the grid.” An electric car with a range of 250 km can store 40 kWh of electricity, Wang said. Five million of those cars could stabilize Beijing’s grid to counteract variations in wind and sun, he said, and the number of automobiles in Beijing is expected to blossom from six million now to 10 million by 2030. If the range of electric cars doubles to 500 km, he added, they will store enough electricity that only two million will be needed. The cost of electric vehicles—about $40,000 in China, according to Wang—remains a hurdle, but China may slash the price by subsidizing vehicle batteries. China’s High Renewable Energy Roadmap resembles several U.S. Dept. of Energy studies that have plotted the route for the U.S. to reduce greenhouse gas emissions more than 80 percent by 2050. The U.S. studies anticipate that solar and wind will provide half of U.S. power needs by 2050, using pumped hydro and compressed-air storage systems to offset variability. Bulk battery systems were deemed too expensive to be viable, said Samuel Baldwin, chief science officer in DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, but the U.S. studies did not anticipate the “distributed storage” option offered by electric vehicles. “I expect that battery storage like the Chinese study, with electric vehicles or stationary storage, is going to play a more important role,” Baldwin said.

It remains uncertain, however, how important a role it will play in China. The country’s first priority is economic development, said Li Junfeng, director general of China’s National Center for Climate Change Strategy and International Cooperation, also an arm of the National Development and Reform Commission.

By 2049, the centennial year of the People’s Republic of China, the Chinese want to achieve a standard of living comparable to the most developed countries.

“China wants to be among the developed countries by 2050,” Li said. “That’s the first priority.”

China’s High Renewable Energy Roadmap is a “visionary scenario,” according to Joanna Lewis, an associate professor of science, technology and international affairs at Georgetown University. But it remains to be seen whether China’s Politburu shares the vision of its National Development and Reform Commission.

“We hope our study can influence the government’s 13th five-year plan and 2050 energy strategy,” said Wang. “That’s very important.”

One way to combat Russia? Move faster on clean energy

Sammy Roth - February 26, 2022 - Los Angeles Times image

The sun sets behind an offshore wind farm in the Irish Sea off the coast of England.
(Paul Ellis / AFP/Getty Images)
Direct link: https://www.latimes.com/business/story/2022-02-26/one-way-to-combat-russia-move-faster-on-clean-energy   When a geopolitical crisis sent gasoline prices skyrocketing four decades ago, President Carter called on Americans to achieve “energy independence” from Middle Eastern oil exporters. He installed solar panels on the White House, donned a cardigan sweater to stay warm and took steps to boost domestic oil production. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has again upended global energy supplies, threatening to raise gas prices that are already higher than ever in California. The U.S. oil industry wants President Biden to ease restrictions on drilling, and Europe has already started importing more fossil fuel from the United States to reduce its dependence on Russian supplies. But doubling down on oil and natural gas isn’t the answer, some security experts say — and neither is energy independence. The war in Europe adds to the urgency of transitioning to clean energy sources such as solar and wind power that are harder for bad actors such as Russia to disrupt, those experts say. The conflict also highlights the importance of the U.S., the European Union and other allies working together to confront the climate crisis while taking global security into account. “There’s been a lot of concern about dependence on Russian [natural] gas, and whether that inhibits countries’ ability to stand up to Russia,” said Erin Sikorsky, director of the Washington, D.C.-based Center for Climate and Security. “The more that countries can wean themselves off oil and gas and move toward renewables, the more independence they have in terms of action.” It’s also important to remember that climate change poses a major national security threat, with the Defense Department and other federal officials warning last year that worsening climate-fueled hazards are likely to drive a surge in global migration, stoking political instability. That helps explain why the U.S. Army released its first-ever climate strategy this month, setting a goal of slashing its planet-warming emissions in half and powering all bases with climate-friendly electricity by 2030. Sikorsky pointed out that Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III has called China the “pacing threat” for the U.S., meaning it poses greater systemic challenges than any other nation. The climate emergency, Sikorsky said, is America’s “shaping threat.”
“It is shaping everything in the background now that the United States is dealing with,” she said. Even before Russian President Vladimir Putin launched his attack on Ukraine this week, European nations were making plans to cut their reliance on energy exports from Russia. The country supplies more than one-quarter of Europe’s oil and nearly 40% of its natural gas, a different planet-warming fuel used for heating and electricity generation. But Russian aggression has sped up the E.U.’s plans. European officials are expected to release a strategy next week for reducing the continent’s use of fossil fuels by 40% over eight years, and ramping up non-polluting energy sources. It’s a plan designed to slow the climate crisis, which is wreaking havoc around the world by exacerbating wildfires, floods, droughts and heat waves. But cutting back on fossil fuels would also help to limit Russia’s geopolitical influence.image
Russian President Vladimir Putin in December. (Alexei Nikolsky / Associated Press)
UC Berkeley energy professor Daniel Kammen — who previously served as science envoy for then-Secretary of State John F. Kerry — lamented that Europe “has clearly needed higher motivations than climate change to cut the Gordian gas knot with Russia.” But if Russia’s invasion of Ukraine pushes the E.U. to act, he said, it could be a silver lining to an otherwise tragic situation. “For all we talk about how inexpensive renewables are, and how quickly energy storage is coming down in price, that hasn’t been enough when it appears that ‘just’ the climate is at stake,” Kammen said. “Now European sovereignty is at stake.” Still, there’s no guarantee Europe will follow through on its latest climate commitments. Even if the geopolitical crisis underscores the benefits of shifting to renewable energy, it could also distract global leaders from the longer-term climate crisis. And in the meantime, one of Europe’s strategies for dealing with constrained Russian gas supplies and rising prices during the last few months has been importing more liquefied natural gas from the United States. It’s an option made possible by fracking, which opened up “shale plays” in regions such as west Texas and made America the world’s largest oil and natural gas producer. “Putin hates U.S. shale because of the influence it gives the U.S. and the world, and the flexibility it gives us,” said Daniel Yergin, a Pulitzer Prize-winning oil historian and vice chair of research and consulting firm IHS Markit.
The American Petroleum Institute — a fossil fuel industry trade group known as API — has urged Biden to respond to the Ukraine crisis by allowing more oil and gas drilling on federal lands and approving new facilities to export liquefied natural gas.
Twenty-seven Republican senators made a similar demand in a letter to Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm last week, calling U.S gas exports “a dependable source of energy and a reliable alternative to strategic competitors like Russia.” But those steps would carry long-term climate consequences,spewing more heat-trapping pollution into that atmosphere. They’re also unlikely to result in new energy supplies coming online quickly enough to make a meaningful difference in Europe. “API’s answer for all of the world’s problems is to remove constraints on domestic oil and gas production,” said David Victor, an international relations professor at UC San Diego. “It’s just a very well-rehearsed argument.”
Rendering of the proposed liquefied natural gas expansion at the Energia Costa Azul facility near Ensenada, Mexico. The plant is operated by IEnova, a Mexico-based energy company and a subsidiary of San Diego's Sempra Energy.
And if Europe follows through on commitments to ratchet down fossil fuel combustion — perhaps by investing in green hydrogen or long-duration batteries — the U.S. could also reap the benefits, Victor said. That’s because California and other states, like Europe, have a growing need for clean power sources that can keep the lights on when the sun isn’t shining and the wind isn’t blowing. European investments to scale up those early-stage technologies could help drive down costs for everyone. “The technologies that are going to be used — whether it’s electrolyzers for hydrogen or fuel cells that use hydrogen for heavy trucks — these are all global,” Victor said. “Those economies [of scale] are just massive. That’s how solar got cheap.”
Westlands Solar Park in California's San Joaquin Valley.
Westlands Solar Park in California’s San Joaquin Valley.(Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)
Calls for energy independence, Victor added, “often end up backfiring, because we benefit from a global technology marketplace.” At the same time, bulking up domestic supply chains could help the U.S. shield itself against price swings and geopolitical conflict — particularly when it comes to lithium and other minerals needed for clean energy technologies such as batteries. Just this week, Biden joined with Gov. Gavin Newsom to announce a $35-million contract with a Las Vegas company that operates the nation’s only rare-earth mine in the California desert. Biden and Newsom also discussed federal support for lithium production at the Salton Sea, in Southern California’s Imperial Valley, which has been described as the “Saudi Arabia of lithium.” Boosting domestic production of critical minerals could help combat Russian influence, since Russia is a leading producer of metals including copper and nickel — a reminder that even the clean-energy economy isn’t immune from bad actors. At the same time, the idea of energy independence is “somewhat dangerous, because it offers you a false sense of security,” said Sarah Ladislaw, a managing director at the think tank RMI. The reality, she said, is that the U.S. will need to find ways to work with Russia and other nations to slash climate pollution, even as it strives to diversify its own clean energy supplies. “You have to be sensitive to your energy vulnerabilities and have contingency plans in place,” said Ladislaw, who previously led the energy security and climate change program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.
     

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