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North-East Asian Super Grid: Renewable energy mix and economics

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Abstract

Further development of the North-East Asian energy system is at a crossroads due to severe limitations of the current conventional energy based system. For North-East Asia it is proposed that the excellent solar and wind resources of the Gobi desert could enable the transformation towards a 100% renewable energy system. An hourly resolved model describes an energy system for North-East Asia, subdivided into 14 regions interconnected by high voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission grids. Simulations are made for highly centralized, decentralized and countrywide grids scenarios. The results for total system levelized cost of electricity (LCOE) are 0.065 and 0.081 €/(kW&h) for the centralized and decentralized approaches for 2030 assumptions. The presented results for 100% renewable resources-based energy systems are lower in LCOE by about 30–40% than recent findings in Europe for conventional alternatives. This research clearly indicates that a 100% renewable resources based energy system is THE real policy option.

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... For a complete understanding of the whole energy system, a fully integrated scenario that also considers heat and mobility demand has to be modeled, even though this is not in the scope of this study. As the applied energy system model has already been described in Breyer et al. (2015) and Bogdanov and Breyer (2016), the coming sections do not include a detailed description of the model, its input data and the applied technologies. However, it presents a comprehensive definition of all additional information that has been assumed for the model in the present study. ...
... Additional information to Breyer et al. (2015) and Bogdanov and Breyer (2016) about geothermal data and water and industrial gas demand are outlined in this section. ...
... The feed-in profiles for solar CSP, optimally tilted and single-axis tracking PV, and wind energy were calculated according to Breyer et al. (2015) and Bogdanov and Breyer (2016). The aggregated profiles of solar PV generation (optimally tilted and single-axis tracking), wind energy power generation and CSP solar field, normalized to maximum capacity averaged for South America are presented in Figure 3. ...
Conference Paper
A vast potential of renewable energy sources and a supportive regulatory environment that has been encouraging investments on renewable energy (RE) are driving the development of non-hydro renewable energy generation in South American countries. Therefore, the possibility to build cost competitive independent 100% RE systems is becoming a reality in a near future. New energy systems based on 100% RE in the year 2030 were calculated for South America using an hourly resolved energy system model. The region was subdivided into 15 sub-regions and three different grid development levels were considered in three different scenarios. The integration of reverse osmosis water desalination and industrial natural gas electricity demand was studied in a forth scenario. The results show that different grid development levels lead to different optimal system designs and total electricity generation. However, all the studied scenarios are able to supply 1813 TWh of electricity, what corresponds to the electricity demand of the area in 2030. The integrated scenario is able to generate also the amount of electricity needed to fulfil 3.9 billion m 3 of water desalination demand and 640 TWhLHV demand of synthetic natural gas. For energy storage, hydro dams will operate similar to battery storages diminishing the role of power-togas systems for seasonal storage, especially in a highly centralized grid scenario. In terms of cost, the total system levelized cost of electricity (LCOE) is quite low for all the analyzed scenarios: it decreased from 62 €/MWh (for a highly decentralized grid scenario) to 56 €/MWh (for a highly centralized grid scenario). The integration of desalination and power-togas into the system has increased the system's flexibility and efficient usage of storage, reducing the total cost in 8% and the electric energy generation in 5%. From the results it can be concluded that 100% RE-based system is feasible for the year 2030 and with the cost assumptions used in this study more cost competitive than other existing alternatives.
... For Russia, the Asian direction of electric power cooperation and participation in the Asian Super Grid megaproject become important and promising [1][2][3][4]. It envisages electric power integration of Russia with China, Japan and South Korea and can give both economic and environmental effects [5][6][7]. ...
... Two variants for the use of renewable energy sources are considered -unfavorable and favorable (basic and ecological). They differ in the values of RES capacity factor due to different climatic conditions [3,5,[18][19][20], as well as charges for carbon dioxide emissions (carbon tax). ...
... Technical and economic indicators adopted in the calculations, and fuel prices (the most likely values for 2020-2030) [5,6,[18][19][20] are given in Tables I and II. Power plants on fossil fuel (coal, natural gas), nuclear power plants, hydroelectric power plants, wind and solar power plants based on PV systems are considered. ...
... [25]). Given the enormous electricity demand in the population-dense coastal-east, large investments into expanding the electricity network are to be expected throughout the decarbonization process of the power sector, as depicted by He et al. citeGangHeSWITCHChina2016 and Christian Breyer et al. [26]. ...
... Thus, they conclude that a 100% renewable power system is not unreasonable. Christian Breyer et al. [26] also looked at the transformation of the power system in China. By aggregating China into larger regions and including neighboring countries, they showed that whole North-East-Asian region could be transformed to use 100% renewables in the power sector. ...
... Overall, previous studies have shown that in order to reach the agreed-upon goal of a maximum mean temperature increase of°2 C, extensive expansions of renewable generation capacities are required, and that large-scale installment of nuclear power may not be an economically feasible alternative, as depicted in the works of Huang et al. [28], Löffler et al. [30], He et al. [8], Bogdanov et al. [29], or Christian Breyer et al. [26]. ...
Article
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Growing prosperity among its population and an inherent increasing demand for energy complicate China’s target of combating climate change, while maintaining its economic growth. This paper, therefore, describes three potential decarbonization pathways to analyze different effects for the electricity, transport, heating, and industrial sectors until 2050. Using an enhanced version of the multi-sectoral, open-source Global Energy System Model, enables us to assess the impact of different CO2 budgets on the upcoming energy system transformation. A detailed provincial resolution allows for the implementation of regional characteristics and disparities within China. Conclusively, we complement the model-based analysis with a quantitative assessment of current barriers for the needed transformation. Results indicate that overall energy system CO2 emissions and in particular coal usage have to be reduced drastically to meet (inter-) national climate targets. Specifically, coal consumption has to decrease by around 60% in 2050 compared to 2015. The current Nationally Determined Contributions proposed by the Chinese government of peaking emissions in 2030 are, therefore, not sufficient to comply with a global CO2 budget in line with the Paris Agreement. Renewable energies, in particular photovoltaics and onshore wind, profit from decreasing costs and can provide a more sustainable and cheaper energy source. Furthermore, increased stakeholder interactions and incentives are needed to mitigate the resistance of local actors against a low-carbon transformation.
... The feasibility of a 100% renewable power system has been demonstrated as a promising carbon mitigation option in many researches, which notably relies on sizeable storage facilities and advanced transmission networks [14][15][16][17][18][19][20][21]. The superior advantages of low carbon and environmental value enable the policy-driven boom of renewable energy deployment, which has gradually bloomed into a new techno-social paradigm. ...
... Moreover, the dynamic simulation model [25], the integrated MARKAL-EFOM system [26] and the bottom-up material flow analysis model [27] are conducted to analyze China's power transition. Many scholars have investigated the possibility of a 100% renewable energy system in the level of nations [18,28], regions [14,16,17] and the whole world [19,20]. The crucial flexibility for hosting a high-share renewable system can be provided by developing optimal mixes of renewable power supply to accommodate temporality issues, demand response solutions, supply-side management of dispatchable renewables, sector coupling, grid extensions and energy storage [24]. ...
... Continuing cost declines underline renewable power as a low-cost climate and decarbonization solution. The levelized cost of electricity (LCOE) of renewable power is promising much less than that of coal power with CCS, which can validly reduce the power supply cost [14,16,17]. If the energy storage industry achieves its technical revolution, together with power grid flexibility solutions, the high-share renewable power system would be more economical. ...
... In apparent contradiction to the above-mentioned market integration studies, the last few years have also seen an increasing number of cost-minimizing energy system studies with high shares (>80%) of variable renewables [17][18][19][20][21][22][23][24][25][26]. The system solutions of these studies correspond to long-term equilibria where all generators, including VRE technologies, exactly cover their costs with their market revenue (the 'zero-profit rule' [27]). ...
... Market quantities as the average CO 2 emission factor is reduced to zero for a scenario without additional flexibility. Market quantities as the average CO 2 emission factor is reduced to zero for a scenario with transmission expansion as well as short-and long-E.22: Market quantities as the average CO 2 emission factor is reduced to zero for a scenario with transmission expansion as well as short-and long-term storage. ...
Preprint
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Although recent studies have shown that electricity systems with shares of wind and solar above 80% can be affordable, economists have raised concerns about market integration. Correlated generation from variable renewable sources depresses market prices, which can cause wind and solar to cannibalize their own revenues and prevent them from covering their costs from the market. This cannibalization appears to set limits on the integration of wind and solar, and thus contradict studies that show that high shares are cost effective. Here we show from theory and with numerical examples how policies interact with prices, revenue and costs for renewable electricity systems. The decline in average revenue seen in some recent literature is due to an implicit policy assumption that technologies are forced into the system, whether it be with subsidies or quotas. If instead the driving policy is a carbon dioxide cap or tax, wind and solar shares can rise without cannibalising their own market revenue, even at penetrations of wind and solar above 80%. Policy is thus the primary factor driving lower market values; the variability of wind and solar is only a secondary factor that accelerates the decline if they are subsidised. The strong dependence of market value on the policy regime means that market value needs to be used with caution as a measure of market integration.
... Their main objective is to guide energy policy road map often at a national scale and longer time horizon. This systemic approach gives a significant insight into the potential contribution of RE sources [12,11], but does not aim at identifying physical parcel locations. Similarly [22] addresses the resource management problem as a knapsack problem, that shows the suitability of linear programming to select among experts' given parcels, the ones with highest resource potential. ...
... line 2-10) , 2) conversion of the resulting polygons defined by their geographical coordinates into de-spatialized items with relevant features (Alg.1: line [11][12][13][14][15][16][17][18][19][20]. The set of relevant built-in Python GIS functions for topological, raster, set and graph operations is defined (packages used: geopandas, shapely, rtree, gdal [21], numpy [43], and networkx). ...
Chapter
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Solar-based energy is an intermittent power resource whose potential pattern varies in space and time. Planning the penetration of such resource into a regional power network is a strategic problem that requires both to locate and bound candidate parcels subject to multiple geographical restrictions and to determine the subset of these and their size so that the solar energy production is maximized and the associated costs minimized. The problem is also permeated with uncertainty present in the estimated forecast energy demand, resource potential and technical costs. This paper presents a novel combination of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Robust Optimization (RO) to develop strategic planning scenarios of a collection of parcels that accounts for their spatio-temporal characteristics, and specifically their hourly radiation patterns that are location dependent, to best fit the network temporal demand and minimize technical costs.
... For renewable power systems at a continental scale, it has indeed been shown that building transmission to enable sharing of resources and trading of variations is a costeffective strategy. This has been shown in model studies of Europe [10], South-East Asia [11,12], South America [13] and North America [14,15]. In these studies, large-scale transmission, rather than large-scale storage, is shown to be the most cost-effective solution for systems dominated by variable renewables. ...
... Transmission is only allowed between neighboring regions. Transmission costs are identical to those in [12], and are based on distances between population-weighted regional centers, and whether the connection is entirely on land or partially marine. ...
... There are several studies that consider the impact of power-to-gas within an energy system, including systems with one hundred per cent renewable generation. One example is Breyer et al. (2015a), who examine a case study of 100% renewable electricity in North-East Asia. They use a linear optimisation model with perfect foresight. ...
... The specific papers considered when arriving at the cost and efficiency assumptions in this paper are, in no particular order,Breyer et al. (2015b);Ahern et al. (2015);Breyer et al. (2011Breyer et al. ( , 2015a;Palzer and Henning (2014);Hlusiak and Breyer (2012); ...
Article
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Electricity systems based on renewables have an increasing demand for flexibility. This paper considers the potential of power-to-gas to provide flexibility and enhance system integration of renewables. Existing research on power-to-gas typically analyses the system effects of a predetermined power-to-gas unit without endogenising the investment decision. Moreover, insights related to market and portfolio effects of power-togas are rare. To this end this work presents a stochastic electricity market model. Market players considered include generating firms with different generation portfolios and different consumer groups. Firms earn revenues from an energy market, a capacity market and a feed-in premium for renewable generation. They maximise their profits by optimising the operation of existing assets and investing in new generation assets and power-to-gas. Firms with renewable generation benefit from investing in power-to-gas. While the technology itself is loss-making, power-to-gas particularly increases demand and hence prices in low-load hours. Therefore, renewable generation becomes more profitable, which justifies the investment. Metrics such as LCOE, which consider each technology in isolation, fail to capture this effect. The increase in the electricity price results in higher costs to consumers and so the overall transfer from consumers to wind Generators increases in the presence of power-to-gas.
... For renewable power systems at a continental scale, it has indeed been shown that building transmission to enable sharing of resources and trading of variations is a costeffective strategy. This has been shown in model studies of Europe [10], South-East Asia [11,12], South America [13] and North America [14,15]. In these studies, large-scale transmission, rather than large-scale storage, is shown to be the most cost-effective solution for systems dominated by variable renewables. ...
... Transmission is only allowed between neighboring regions. Transmission costs are identical to those in [12], and are based on distances between population-weighted regional centers, and whether the connection is entirely on land or partially marine. ...
Preprint
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Long distance transmission within continents has been shown to be one of the most important variation management strategies in renewable energy systems, where allowing for transmission expansion will reduce system cost by around 20%. In this paper, we test whether the system cost further decreases when transmission is extended to intercontinental connections. We analyze a Eurasian interconnection between China, Mid-Asia and Europe, using a capacity expansion model with hourly time resolution. The model is constrained by an increasingly tighter global cap on CO2 emissions in order to investigate the effect of different levels of reliance on variable sources. Our results show that a supergrid option decreases total system cost by a maximum of 5%, compared to continental grid integration. This maximum effect is achieved when (i) the generation is constrained to be made up almost entirely by renewables, (ii) the land available for VRE farms is relatively limited and the demand is relatively high and (iii) the cost for solar PV and storage is high. The importance of these two factors is explained by that a super grid allows for harnessing of remote wind-, solar- and hydro resources as well as management of variations, both of which are consequential only in cases where dispatchable resources are limited or very costly. As for the importance of the cost for storage, it represents a competing variation management option, and when it has low cost, it substitutes part of the role of the supergrid, which is to manage variations through long-distance trade. The cost decrease from a Eurasian supergrid was found to be between 0% and 5%, compared to the cost in the case of continental-scale grids. We conclude that the benefits of a supergrid from a techno-economic perspective are in most cases negligible, or modest at best.17 pages, f
... The observed simultaneous battery discharge-PtG charge process is part of the least cost solution. This effect has been already reported for the cases of regions within Northeast Asia [68] and India [15]. The overall dispatch trend discussed here is similar to what is discussed in Solomon et al. [38] and Breyer et al. [78] in spite of the use of gas storage to achieve 100% RE in the present case. ...
... This is in agreement with [38], and may not be solved by following the present day reserve criteria. In addition, the observed dispatch is in agreement with what was discussed in Solomon et al. [38] and Breyer et al. [68] ...
Article
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The nexus between growing shares of renewables (penetration), storage requirements, and curtailment was studied using a linear optimisation model. The study was performed using a dataset of Israel’s electricity system. Five scenarios are designed to assess the techno-economic impact of curtailment under various policy-based frameworks. The results show that the three parameters are linked to each other in a way that necessitates simultaneous increase of a total loss (curtailment plus storage efficiency), penetration and storage capacity in the energy transition. Depending on the curtailment policy, penetration increases significantly with a small increase in storage capacity until it reaches a corresponding point of inflection. Based on these physical relationships, storage technologies were classified as diurnal and seasonal. Diurnal storage capacity continually increases to a maximum capacity of about daily average demand, which corresponds to a penetration of approximately 90% of annual demand where the deployment of seasonal storage significantly increases. Having no curtailment was shown to lead to higher total system cost as compared to the system optimised with curtailment. Overall, the nexus between the three factors was shown to define when to deploy and dispatch storage technologies. The evidence supporting these findings is detailed for the first time.
... https ://iea-etsap.org/index.php/etsap-tools/model-generators/times ted MARKAL-EFOM System), LEAP 4 (Long-range Energy Alternatives Planning System), LUT( hourly demand power linear energy model at Lappeenranta University of Technology) (BREYER, BOGDANOV, KOMOTO et al., 2015), and Other tools 5 (H2RES, STREAM, energyPRO. . . .) are summarized and referenced as our aim is not to go deeply in investigating most of energy models but just to highlight the most familiar ones in literature. ...
... Their main ob-jective is to guide energy policy road map often at a national scale and longer time horizon. This systemic approach gives a significant insight into the potential contribution of RE sources (BREYER, BOGDANOV, KOMOTO et al., 2015 ;BREYER, BOGDANOV, AGHAHOSSEINI et al., 2017), but does not aim at identifying physical parcel locations. Similarly (GERVET et al., 2013) addresses the resource management problem as a knapsack problem, that shows the suitability of linear programming to select among experts' given parcels, the ones with highest resource potential. ...
Thesis
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Les pénuries d'électricité sont un problème mondial majeur à cause de l'augmentation de la demande d'électricité, c'est pourquoi l’implémentation des énergies renouvelables(ER) est une solution alternative importante pour répondre à nos besoins en électricité, en réduisant les émissions de gaz à effet de serre pour lutter contre le changement climatique et d'atténuer la dépendance à l'égard des ressources en combustibles fossiles. Ainsi, la planification de la transition vers les ER est une stratégie essentielle que le réseau électrique soit connecté au nationale ou hors dans les zones rurales. La plupart des pays sont déjà commencé à renforcer leurs infrastructures énergétiques pour les alimenter à partir de ressources ER durables, mais les ressources potentielles limitées pourraient arrêter ce déploiement. L’intégration de différentes ressources d'ER au réseau électrique est un enjeu majeur pour assurer la stabilité et l’implémentation de systèmes d'ER à rendement nécessite à la prise de décision pour encourager d'investissement. Donc, la planification des ER doit être évaluée à partir des critères technico-économiques et socio-environnementaux. Cette thèse surligner le concept principal de la transition 100 % ER d’ici fin 2030 en Guyane française où il y a un enjeu dans l'élaboration du scénario énergétique d'ici 2030 et les centrales électriques actuelles ne peuvent pas se nourrir l'augmentation de la demande d'électricité avec des ressources limitées. En résumé, cette thèse répondra à la question : comment optimiser différents scénarios de production d'énergie en tenant compte des dimensions spatio-temporelles du problème et des données
... The IEA [41] estimates that "125,000 cars could be equivalent to 300MW of flexibilitya medium size pump storage plant or a successful stationary demand side response program". 8 However, the identified total technical potential for hydropower in Europe only doubles current installed capacity [45]. 9 http://www.solarwirtschaft.de/en/photovoltaic-market.html. ...
... In this way, the increase in transportation losses would be largely offset by the use of locations where the available resource is more abundant [2,32,48,96]. Although several projects have been proposed, none is currently under way [8,23,35]. For example, the DESERTEC project aiming to harness solar energy from deserts, producing large amounts of electric power by CSP plants based in Northern Africa and the Arabian Peninsula, and transmit it through high-voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission lines to Europe [22]. ...
Article
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The transition to renewable energies will intensify the global competition for land. Nevertheless, most analyses to date have concluded that land will not pose significant constraints on this transition. Here, we estimate the land-use requirements to supply all currently consumed electricity and final energy with domestic solar energy for 40 countries considering two key issues that are usually not taken into account: (1) the need to cope with the variability of the solar resource, and (2) the real land occupation of solar technologies. We focus on solar since it has the highest power density and biophysical potential among renewables. The exercise performed shows that for many advanced capitalist economies the land requirements to cover their current electricity consumption would be substantial, the situation being especially challenging for those located in northern latitudes with high population densities and high electricity consumption per capita. Assessing the implications in terms of land availability (i.e., land not already used for human activities), the list of vulnerable countries enlarges substantially (the EU-27 requiring around 50% of its available land), few advanced capitalist economies requiring low shares of the estimated available land. Replication of the exercise to explore the land-use requirements associated with a transition to a 100% solar powered economy indicates this transition may be physically unfeasible for countries such as Japan and most of the EU-27 member states. Their vulnerability is aggravated when accounting for the electricity and final energy footprint, i.e., the net embodied energy in international trade. If current dynamics continue, emerging countries such as India might reach a similar situation in the future. Overall, our results indicate that the transition to renewable energies maintaining the current levels of energy consumption has the potential to create new vulnerabilities and/or reinforce existing ones in terms of energy and food security and biodiversity conservation.
... Two thirds of the Southeast Asian electricity demand could be met with solar energy, half of which would be indigenous and half imported from Australia [56]. A fully renewable electricity system for Northeast Asia was studied [57] and updated model results can be found in [58]. Overall results confirmed that a transnational HVDC grid plays an important role in a fully renewable electricity system; it enables utilization of best resource sites, decreases required capacity and capital for energy storage and reduces required generation capacities. ...
... In [49] it is acknowledged that even though transmission lines can be a crucial element for renewable based electricity supply, enabling geographical balance effect and utilization of the best resource sites, opposed political agendas can restrict full implementation of such transmission grids. It was found in [57] that transnational HVDC power lines substitute short-term storage in particular. Thus, restrictions exposed by political agendas could increase demand for local short-term storage, such as battery storage. ...
Article
There are a fast growing number of global energy scenarios based on high shares of renewable energy (RE). However, many of them lack comprehensive analyses of energy storage systems. A review of global scenarios reveals that energy storage systems are assessed mainly qualitatively; quantitative assessments of global energy storage demand are scarce. The possible future roles of energy storage systems are plentiful: they can be used in short-term control (e.g. in power grid frequency control), as a medium-term balance mechanism (to shift daily production to meet demand), as long-term storage (seasonal shift), or to substitute grid extensions. Typically, only power storage is considered, if energy storage is assessed at all. Scenario-makers do not always assess the dynamics and synergies of energy storage systems in the power, heat and mobility sectors. To date, publications of the dynamics between continent-wide renewable energy production, transmission grids and energy storage capacities are not numerous. The existing body of research indicates that transmission lines connecting individual countries are regarded as a key component in enabling RE-based, low-cost energy systems. However, various issues could restrain the implementation of proposed grid connections. These barriers could be overcome by partially substituting energy grid reinforcements with energy storage solutions. Furthermore, less storage related curtailment of renewable energy could lead to improved energy system efficiency and cost. Therefore, energy scenarios that capture quantitatively different configurations of international energy exchange and its influence on regional storage systems are needed. High spatial and temporal resolution energy system models are needed to assess scenarios for high share of renewable energy supply and demand for energy storage.
... In this regard, while economic and technical aspects are stressed in the literature, geopolitical underpinnings of intra-regional grid connectivity are less emphasized. In one of the most comprehensive studies on renewable energy (RE) generation, storage and transmission via sub-regional and regional grids, Breyer at al. examine a Northeast Asian super grid based on a simulation in which solar and wind resources from the Gobi Desert are transmitted along 14 sub-regions in NEA [16]. The findings provide a strong case for renewable energy-based grid network development, which is also voiced in another study where the authors indicate that the cost advantage of a RE-based grid system would help decrease costs of electricity regardless of installation costs and differences in electricity prices in related countries [17]. ...
Article
Over the past decade, global energy generation via clean resources has grown considerably. An energy dependent region, Northeast Asia (NEA), in this regard, has made significant progress in clean energy development. However, a region-wide energy cooperation is still far from being realized due, in large part, to a lack of viable framework which helps coordinate, among others, infrastructure development, institution build-up, market connectivity and regulation, and financing. In this paper, through an examination of the potential role of an energy grid interconnection, we aim to explore the causal links between clean energy development in NEA and the emergence of a regional energy cooperation framework. We observe that the energy complementarities and complexities in NEA both facilitate and require the establishment of a regional energy grid, which would have far-reaching economic and political implications. Economically, grid development may encourage energy-related investment, innovation, efficiency and environmental protection. Geopolitically, regional grid networking may contribute to confidence building, institutionalization and de-securitization. Thus, we argue, as a process of energy socialization, the formation of a comprehensive and institutionalized cooperation framework in NEA would lead to broad implications for regional development, security and community build up.
... The concept of a super grid, a wide area synchronous grid or interconnection systems capable of very large-scale transmission of RE is not unprecedented. There have been several studies concerning continental sized interconnected systems [8][9][10][11][12][13], where the main challenges are introduced and categorised as follows: control systems from both security and reliability perspectives, network complexity and power grid congestion. On the other hand, the benefits of electrical grid interconnections are substantial [7,12,[14][15][16][17][18], such as pooling of electricity generation and load, lowering of generation costs, opening and expanding the electricity market and reducing the need for baseload generation. ...
Article
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The Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement, as the two biggest climate action initiatives, address the need to shift towards a fully sustainable energy system. The deployment of renewable energy, especially solar and wind power, decreases carbon dioxide emissions, but presents issues of resource intermittency. In this study, a cost-optimised 100% renewable energy based system is analysed and quantified for the Americas for the reference year 2030 using high spatially and temporally resolved weather data. Several scenarios have been applied, from a decentralised power system towards a fully centralised and interconnected system, taking into account a mix of renewable energy, energy storage and transmission networks. This research aims to evaluate the benefits of an interconnected energy system for the Americas. The levelised cost of electricity (LCOE) is between 48.8 and 59.0 €/MWh depending on the chosen scenario. The results show that the LCOE and total annualised cost drop by 14% and 15%, respectively, in a centralised power system. The optimised utilisation of transmission grids leads to less energy storage requirement. Sector coupling brings further benefits by reducing additional 4% of LCOE, where electricity demand for power, seawater desalination and non-energetic industrial gas sectors have been supplied. A comparison between the interconnected Americas and North and South America individually shows a reduction of 1.6% and 4.0% for the total annual system cost and LCOE. Although the cost of the energy system decreased due to wide grid interconnection, substantial benefits have not been achieved as reported earlier for a Pan-American energy system. A scenario with synthetic natural gas (SNG) trading through a liquefied natural gas value chain has also been presented. The results suggest that local SNG production cost in the assumed consumption centre is almost the same as the cost of imported SNG.
... The most widely discussed pathways for an alternative energy future involve the massively expanded deployment of a wide range of "renewable" technologies, including harnessing the energy in wind, sunlight, ocean waves and tides, as well as more traditional (and dispatchable-electricity generation sources that can be generated at any time at the request of electricity network operators or demand) hydropower and biomass combustion. Most advocates of these energy technologies shun any use of nuclear power [13,[32][33][34] and the majority of those who acknowledge its role view it as simply (a small) part of the low-carbon energy jigsaw puzzle [35]. Some argue that an all-out pursuit of a diverse mix of systems that harness sunlight, wind, waves and plant life at continental scales, combined with vast improvements in energy efficiency and energy conservation for both production and consumption sides and cheap energy storage, are "the answer" for global decarbonization. ...
Article
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To displace fossil fuels and achieve the global greenhouse-gas emissions reductions required to meet the Paris Agreement on climate change, the prevalent argument is that a mix of different low-carbon energy sources will need to be deployed. Here we seek to challenge that viewpoint. We argue that a completely decarbonized, energy-rich and sustainable future could be achieved with a dominant deployment of next-generation nuclear fission and associated technologies for synthesizing liquid fuels and recycling waste. By contrast, non-dispatchable energy sources like wind and solar energy are arguably superfluous, other than for niche applications, and run the risk of diverting resources away from viable and holistic solutions. For instance, the pairing of variable renewables with natural-gas backup fails to address many of the entrenched problems we seek to solve. Our conclusion is that, given the urgent time frame and massive extent of the energy-replacement challenge, half-measures that distract from or stymie effective policy and infrastructure investment should be avoided.
... There are several studies that consider the impact of power-to-gas within an energy system, including systems with one hundred per cent renewable generation. Examples include Breyer et al. (2015a); Palzer and Henning (2014); Henning and Palzer (2014); Moeller et al. (2014); Varone and Ferrari (2015). These studies tend to focus on the potential for surplus renewable generation to be consumed by power-to-gas units, rather than focusing on the optimal operation of the entire system. ...
Preprint
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Energy systems based on renewables have an increasing demand for flexibility. In this paper, we consider the potential of power-togas to provide flexibility and enhance the system integration of renewables. Existing research on power-togas typically analyses the system effects of a predetermined power-togas unit without endogenising the investment decision. Moreover, insights related to the market and portfolio effects of power-togas are rare. To this end we present a stochastic mixed complementarity problem, which models the optimisation problems of different market players individually. The players we consider include power generating firms with different generation portfolios and different consumer groups. Firms earn revenues from an energy market, a quantity-based capacity market and a feed-in premium for renewable generation. They maximise their profits by optimising the operation of existing assets and making investments in new generation assets and in power-togas. We find that firms with renewable generation benefit from investing in power-togas. While the technology itself is loss-making, power-togas particularly increases demand and hence prices in low-load hours. Therefore, renewable generation becomes more profitable, which justifies the investment. However, the price increase results in higher costs to consumers so the overall transfer from consumers to wind generators increases in the presence of power-togas .
... With rapid industrialisation, unprecedented economic progress and a soaring appetite for energy, the total electricity consumption that is around 6847 TWh in 2015, is estimated to soar up to 15,078 TWh by 2050 (IEA, 2016;Bogdanov and Breyer, 2016). Renewable energy is high on the agenda for countries across Northeast Asia, with excellent wind and solar resources particularly in Mongolia (Breyer et al., 2015). ...
Article
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Aside from reducing the energy sector’s negative impacts on the environment, renewable power generation technologies are creating new wealth and becoming important job creators for the 21st century. Employment creation over the duration of the global energy transition is an important aspect to explore, which could have policy ramifications around the world. This research focuses on the employment impact of an accelerated uptake of renewable electricity generation that sees the world derive 100% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2050, in order to meet the goals set by the Paris Agreement. An analytical job creation assessment for the global power sector from 2015 to 2050 is estimated and presented on a regional basis. It is found that the global direct jobs associated with the electricity sector increases from about 21 million in 2015 to nearly 35 million in 2050. Solar PV, batteries and wind power are the major job creating technologies during the energy transition from 2015 to 2050. This is the first global study presenting job creation projections for energy storage. The results indicate that a global energy transition will have an overall positive impact on the future stability and growth of economies around the world.
... From Fig. 12, the charging of the gas storage can be seen in the summer and early summer months, becoming fully charged by the end of the summer. This effect has already been reported by Breyer et al. [37] for the case of South Korea and Japan, and by Solomon et al. [38] for the case of Israel. ...
Article
In this work, a 100% renewable energy (RE) transition pathway based on an hourly resolved model till 2050 is simulated for India, covering demand by the power, desalination and non-energetic industrial gas sectors. Energy storage technologies: batteries, pumped hydro storage (PHS), adiabatic compressed air energy storage, thermal energy storage and power-to-gas technology are used in the modelling to provide flexibility to the system and balance demand. The optimisation for each time period (transition is modeled in 5 year steps) is carried out on an assumed costs and technological status of all energy technologies involved. Results indicate that a 100% renewable based energy system is achievable in 2050 with the levelised cost of electricity falling from a current level of 58 €/MWhe to 52 €/MWhe in 2050 in the power scenario. With large scale intermittent renewable energy sources in the system, the demand for storage technologies increases from the current level to 2050. Batteries provide 2596 TWh, PHS provides 12 TWh and gas storage provides 197 TWh of electricity to the total electricity demand. Most of the storage demand will be based on batteries, which provide as much as 42% of the total electricity demand. The synchronised discharging of batteries in the night time and charging of power-to-gas in the early summer and summer months reduces curtailment on the following day, and thus is a part of a least cost solution. The combination of solar photovoltaics (PV) and battery storage evolves as the low-cost backbone of Indian energy supply, resulting in 3.2–4.3 TWp of installed PV capacities, depending on the applied scenario in 2050. During the monsoon period, complementarity of storage technologies and the transmission grid help to achieve uninterrupted power supply. The above results clearly prove that renewable energy options are the most competitive and a least-cost solution for achieving a net zero emission energy system. This is the first study of its kind in full hourly resolution for India.
... It is also realistic to assume that some countries (e.g., Australia, Iceland, and Norway) could achieve high renewable shares thanks to sufficient natural resources (wind, water or sunlight, and suitable sites for hydro), coupled with a low population density (Steinke et al., 2013). A large network, termed a 'super grid', might further enhance the possibility of higher renewable shares by geographically distributing renewables (Breyer et al., 2015;Connolly et al., 2016). However, none of these options are currently viable at sufficient scale for South Korea, due to severe geographical limitations. ...
Article
Given the limited potential for renewable energy and high population density of South Korea, nuclear has been an essential electricity generation option for supply of reliable power whilst reducing greenhouse-gas emissions and mitigating air pollution. However, the recently elected (2017) South Korean government has a policy committing them to a phase-out of nuclear and coal, offset by an increase in the share of variable renewables. However, the main component of the power transition is set to be liquefied natural gas (LNG), due to technical and economic barriers facing large-scale renewables. It is therefore critical for South Korea to develop an evidence-based perspective on the details of the transition, before any future energy policy is decided. Here we review: i) the national role of renewable sources given technical and economic limitations in South Korea; ii) potential environmental and economic issues with gas; and iii) potential barriers of and benefits to a nuclear pathway. Our conclusion i
... Like with technology, if you act late, it may be too late to re-design it [35]. As shown by our Neo-Carbon Energy research [38], the lowering costs of solar and wind can be supported by an enabling policy and market environment. Cities can be highly relevant actors towards renewable energy powered peer-to-peer urban futures [36], but some present problems must be overcome. ...
Article
The relationship between urban governance and citizens has to be revisited as citizens and their peer-to-peer networks emerge as central actors in creating the city space. Renewable energy is a key driver, since it enables citizens to produce their own energy. This transition creates pressure for the rigid urban planning system to reinvent itself. No more can urban governance alone define, produce, and create a liveable eco-smart city. This paper claims that new perspectives are needed to help urban planners, city residents, and stakeholders anticipate and shape urban futures co-operatively. Futures images of peer-to-peer organised urban futures and their challenges to urban governance are provided, based on two futures research projects (ENCORE and Neo-Carbon Energy). Core themes influencing the liveability of an urban environment have been identified as 1) meaningful environment, 2) grassroots approaches, and 3) hybrid spaces. To conclude, a conceptual model of anticipatory hybrid governance is presented.
... The data has been gathered from ETOGAS (2015), Agora Energiewende (2014), Energinet.dk (2012), FCH JU (2015), Götz et al. (2015) and Breyer et al. (2015b). In addition, there are more uncertainties about the achievement of techno-economic targets for 2030. ...
... With rapid industrialisation, unprecedented economic progress and a soaring appetite for energy, the total electricity consumption that is around 6847 TWh in 2015, is estimated to soar up to 15,078 TWh by 2050 (IEA, 2016;. Renewable energy is high on the agenda for countries across Northeast Asia, with excellent wind and solar resources particularly in Mongolia (Breyer et al., 2015). ...
Thesis
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There are undeniable signs from all over the world demonstrating that climate change is already upon us. Numerous scientific studies have warned of dire consequences should humankind fail to keep average global temperatures from rising beyond 1.5°C. Drastic measures to eliminate greenhouse gas emissions from all economic activities across the world are essential. Major emphasis has been on the energy sector, which contributes the bulk of GHG emissions. Inevitably, energy scenarios describing future transition pathways towards low, and zero emissions energy systems are commonly proposed as mitigation strategies. However, there is growing awareness in the research community that energy transitions should be understood and analysed not only from technical and economical perspectives but also from a social perspective. This research explores the broader ramifications of a global energy transition from various dimensions: costs and externalities of energy production, democratisation of future energy systems and the role of prosumers, employment creation during energy transitions at the global, regional and national levels and the effects of air pollution during energy transitions across the world. This research builds on fundamental techno-economic principles of energy systems and relies firmly on a cost driven rationale for determining cost optimal energy system transition pathways. Techno-economic analyses of energy transitions around the world are executed with the LUT Energy System Transition Model, while the corresponding socioeconomic aspects are expressed in terms of levelised cost of electricity, cost effective development of prosumers, job creation, and the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions along with air pollution. Findings during the course of this original research involved novel assessments of the levelised cost of electricity encompassing externalities across G20 countries, cost optimal prosumer modelling across the world, estimates of job creation potential of various renewables, storage and power-to-X technologies including the production of green hydrogen and e-fuels during global, regional and national energy transitions. The novel research methods and insights are published in several articles and presented in this thesis, which highlight robust socioeconomic benefits of transitioning the current fossil fuels dominated global energy system towards renewables complemented by storage and flexible power-to-X solutions, resulting in near zero emissions of greenhouse gases and air pollutants. These research findings and insights have significant relevance to stakeholders across the energy landscape and present a compelling case for the rapid transformation of energy systems across the world. However, the research does have limitations and is based on energy transition pathways that are inherent with uncertainties and some socioeconomic challenges. Nonetheless, actions to enhance and accelerate the ongoing energy transition across the world must be prioritised, if not for technical feasibility or economic viability, but for the social wellbeing of human society and future generations.
... The second most researched major regions in the world had been Northeast Asia (Komoto et al., 2009;Mano et al., 2014;Song, 2012;2014;Komoto et al., 2013;Breyer et al., 2015) and an East Asian energy interconnection from Australia to China (Taggart et al., 2012). The vast solar and wind energy potential in Australia and the huge energy demand in the highly populated regions of East Asia could create substantial benefits for all involved countries (Taggart et al., 2012;Blakers et al., 2012;Gulagi et al., 2017a;). ...
Article
The discussion about the benefits of a global energy interconnection is gaining momentum in recent years. The techno-economic benefits of this integration are broadly discussed for the major regions around the world. While there has not been substantial research on the techno-economic benefits, however, some initial results of the global energy interconnection are presented in this paper. Benefits achieved on the global scale are lower than the interconnections within the national and sub-national level. The world is divided into 9 major regions and the major regions comprise of 23 regions. When all the considered regions are interconnected globally, the overall estimated levelized cost of electricity is 52.5 €/MWh for year 2030 assumptions, which is 4% lower than an isolated global energy system. Further, the required installed capacities decrease by 4% for the fully interconnected system. Nevertheless, a more holistic view on the entire energy system will progress research on global energy interconnection as, synthetic power-to-X fuels and chemicals emerge as an important feature of the future sustainable global energy system with strong interactions of the power system not only to the supply, in energy fuel and chemicals trading globally, but also to the demand side. Global energy interconnection will be part of the solution to achieve the targets of the Paris Agreement and more research will help to better understand its impact and additional value.
... EnergyPLAN, introduced in 2006 [46], has been used in multi-sector 100% RE studies for the Aalborg Municipality [47], Åland Islands [48,49], Macedonia [50], Denmark [51,52], Scotland [53], Ireland [54,55], Finland [56], South East Europe [57], and the European Union [12], among others. The LUT model, introduced in 2015 [58] and inspired by an earlier model [59], has been utilised in 100% RE studies for global analyses of the power sector [15] but also all sectors [16], detailed sector coupling studies including the industry sector [17], applied for major regions as transition model for Europe [60] and Northeast Asia [61], while overnight scenarios have been applied for all major regions [14], country studies have been applied for single-node overnight [62], single-node transition [63] and multi-node transition [64] cases. The latest studies utilising the LUT model cover multi-sector, transition scenarios with partial sector coupling [65], and with multi-node, full sector coupling comparing different scenarios [66][67][68]. ...
Article
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As the discourse surrounding 100% renewable energy systems has evolved, several energy system modelling tools have been developed to demonstrate the technical feasibility and economic viability of fully sustainable, sector coupled energy systems. While the characteristics of these tools vary among each other, their purpose remains consistent in integrating renewable energy technologies into future energy systems. This paper examines two such energy system models, the LUT Energy System Transition model, an optimisation model, and the EnergyPLAN simulation tool, a simulation model, and develops cost-optimal scenarios under identical assumptions. This paper further analyses different novel modelling approaches used by modellers. Scenarios are developed using the LUT model for Sun Belt countries, for the case of Bolivia, to examine the effects of multi and single-node structuring, and the effects of overnight and energy transition scenarios are analysed. Results for all scenarios indicate a solar PV dominated energy system; however, limitations arise in the sector coupling capabilities in EnergyPLAN, leading it to have noticeably higher annualised costs compared to the single-node scenario from the LUT model despite similar primary levelised costs of electricity. Multi-nodal results reveal that for countries with rich solar resources, high transmission from regions of best solar resources adds little value compared to fully decentralised systems. Finally, compared to the overnight scenarios, transition scenarios demonstrate the impact of considering legacy energy systems in sustainable energy system analyses.
... Various studies on international power system interconnections in Northeast Asia are relatively recently and consider both qualitative and quantitative analyses. For instance, the potential economic and environmental benefits from connecting power grids and developing RE in Northeast Asia at the regional level have been analyzed in [14][15][16]. An earlier study has revealed the potential costeffectiveness of an interconnection between Japan and Korea [17]. ...
Article
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In many regions, international power system interconnections provide economic, energy-security, environmental, and technical benefits. In contrast, such interconnections remain scarce in Northeast Asia. In 2016, after approving a joint memorandum of understanding between major electric power companies from China, Japan, South Korea, and Russia, related initiatives regained momentum in the region. Nevertheless, the corresponding developments in Japan remain limited, mainly owing to the lack of involvement of Japanese electric power companies. This study represents a pioneering attempt to provide an economic assessment based on power exchange prices of a power system interconnection between Japan and South Korea regarding the competitiveness of electric power companies in terms of competitive business segments and strategic consequences. We found that although the position of Japanese generators may slightly deteriorate, that of the supply segment would substantially improve, thus suggesting that more opportunities than threats are derived from the interconnection. This promising outcome may foster the adoption of an interconnection with South Korea considering the positive economic and business perspectives in Japan. Furthermore, realizing the interconnection may improve the energy security and air quality in the region.
... For instance, the idea of establishing the Asian Super Grid goes back as far as the 1990s, reemerging in 2011, when SoftBank's chairman Masayoshi Son proposed a similar idea and established the Renewable Energy Institute (n.d.) in the aftermath of the Fukushima incident. Since then, energy sector stakeholders from Northeast Asian countries have discussed various forms of regional energy cooperation initiatives, such as Asian regional power grids and pipelines in the renewable energy, hydropower, and natural gas arenas (Breyer et al. 2015;Christoffersen, 2018;Paik, 2011;von Hippel, 2015;Yang, 2005). However, North Korea has been unable to play an active role in the conversations and agenda setting for this regional energy integration. ...
Article
North Korea remains one of the countries whose energy conditions should be drastically improved not just for its own people but also for the international community to achieve multiple energy-related goals under the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. To generate future energy cooperation ideas, this study examines previously proposed or implemented programs between North Korea and international entities, recognizing that they have largely neglected to incorporate the evolving local energy landscape and priorities of North Korea. This study thus pays particular attention to the development and diffusion of renewable energy under the Kim Jong-un administration, from which it draws a policy-oriented suggestion that the renewable energy field could offer a path to future international energy cooperation with North Korea.
... Most of the quantitative studies estimated the cost savings from the 100% renewable energy based super grids. For instance, Reference [3] optimized the total cost in the North-East Asia power grid based on 100% renewable resources. They found that the power grid based on 100% renewable resources system is 30-40% more cost effective compared with a grid with non-renewable resources. ...
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One-fourth population of the world lives in South Asia. The electricity generation for this population consumes the substantial fossil fuels, resulting in the significant emissions of harmful gases in the global environment. To protect the natural environment, South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) has planned a super smart grid (SSG) for the power sharing between South Asian countries through the integration of the renewable energy resources (RERs). However, the capability of these countries to construct such a mega power grid is unclear due to the unavailability of proper strategic analysis, lack of information about RERs potential, and the lack of decision making models. To address such issues, this paper analyzes the existing power grids in the SAARC countries focusing on the formation of a mega power grid. Then, the paper identifies the existing electricity potential of these countries based on the key renewable and non-renewable resources. Then, this paper develops an integer linear programming model based on the power generation cost, CO2 emissions, and disruption risk. This study solves the proposed model through the implementation of goal programming methods in an efficient mathematical optimization software (i.e. LINGO). The results exhibited that the SAARC countries have the capability to share a sustainable SSG through the substantial integration of RERs. For instance, the model solution based on 100% renewable power (i.e. Case 5) exhibited 36% cost savings, 86% CO2 emission reduction, and 39% risk reduction compared with non-renewable power based model solution (i.e. Case 1). Finally, this study performs the cost-benefit analysis for the existing and proposed power systems of SAARC countries. The results provide the various insights to policy makers and practitioners for the strategic decision making related to the SAARC SSG. In addition, the methodology of this paper can be adopted for other SSGs infrastructures around the world.
Article
Long distance transmission within continents has been shown to be one of the most effective variation management strategies to reduce the cost of renewable energy systems. In this paper, we test whether the system cost further decreases when transmission is extended to intercontinental connections. We analyze a Eurasian interconnection between China, Mid-Asia and Europe, using a capacity expansion model with hourly time resolution. Our modelling results suggestthat a supergrid option decreases total system cost by a maximum of 5%, compared to continental grid integration. The maximum cost reductionis achieved when (i) the generation is constrained to be made up almost entirely by renewables, (ii) the land available for VRE farms is relatively limited and the demand is relatively high and (iii) the cost for solar PV and storage is high. This is explained by that a super grid allows for harnessing of remote wind-, solar- and hydro resources demand centers. As for low-cost storage, it represents a competing variation management option, and may substitute part of the role of the supergrid, which is to manage variations through long-distance trade. We conclude that the benefits of a supergrid from a techno-economic perspective are in most cases negligible, or modest at best.
Article
International power grid interconnections provide links between electricity transmission systems of two or more adjoining countries, thus allowing those countries to share power generation resources. In this paper, electricity supply and demands in three Arab regions are overviewed, potential of renewable power generation is evaluated and existing interconnections in Arab countries are presented. Common features of China and Arab countries, such as abundant low-emission energy resources, rapid economic growth and rising energy demands, make China-Arab interconnection profitable. There are also several obstacles to overcome in this interconnection scenario.
Article
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The paper investigates the pathways and combinations of factors for the sustainable development of solar photovoltaic policies using a QCA analysis of 20 leading countries. The main finding of this research is the causal relationship between the selected contributing factors and sustainability of the policy outcomes, which is interpreted as high/low GDP with a high democracy level, high fossil-fuel consumption and high LCOE being related to the deployment of market-based policies which include target, FiT and others (subsidies, tax, loans, TGC/RPS); while high/low GDP, low level of PV penetration, high RE investment, and high R&D expenditure contributes to more successful technological-R&D-based policies which include R&D funding and demonstration programs.
Article
Power systems for South and Central America based on 100% renewable energy (RE) in the year 2030 were calculated for the first time using an hourly resolved energy model. The region was subdivided into 15 sub-regions. Four different scenarios were considered: three according to different high voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission grid development levels (region, country, area-wide) and one integrated scenario that considers water desalination and industrial gas demand supplied by synthetic natural gas via power-togas (PtG). RE is not only able to cover 1813 TWh of estimated electricity demand of the area in 2030 but also able to generate the electricity needed to fulfil 3.9 billion m 3 of water desalination and 640 TWh LHV of synthetic natural gas demand. Existing hydro dams can be used as virtual batteries for solar and wind electricity storage, diminishing the role of storage technologies. The results for total levelized cost of electricity (LCOE) are decreased from 62 €/MWh for a highly decentralized to 56 €/MWh for a highly centralized grid scenario (currency value of the year 2015). For the integrated scenario, the levelized cost of gas (LCOG) and the leve-lized cost of water (LCOW) are 95 €/MWh LHV and 0.91 €/m 3 , respectively. A reduction of 8% in total cost and 5% in electricity generation was achieved when integrating desalination and power-to-gas into the system.
Chapter
Freshwater production costs generally depend on site-specific conditions such as local energy costs, level of freshwater quality required, and concentration of constituents in feed water. The latter is a particularly important factor in desalination system design and cost. A competitive cost for freshwater production using renewable energy–driven seawater desalination systems can be attained in the case of optimum designs and proper selection and utilization of renewable energy sources available in a region, so as to maximize the synergy between diverse resources. With efficiency improvements and other advances in renewable energy technologies, the costs associated with such systems have decreased notably in recent years. In this chapter, an overview of desalination economics is provided. Then an economic study of freshwater production is presented based on a technoeconomic analysis of desalination systems and renewable energy technologies. From the technoeconomic analysis, the cost of water produced from desalination facilities and the cost of energy from renewable energy technologies are predicted for systems, today and in the future. Next, exergy concepts are related to economic principles through exergoeconomic analysis, and suggestions for reducing the overall costs of freshwater and electricity are developed. Through exergoeconomic analyses of renewable energy–driven desalination systems, the proper allocation of economic resources can be determined to optimize the design and operation of such systems. Finally, an exergo-environmental analysis using life cycle assessment is presented to evaluate the environmental impact of desalination systems using renewable and nonrenewable energy.
Article
Due to growing concerns over climate change, as well as to the recent cost declines, variable renewable energies (VREs), such as wind and solar PV, have seen rapid deployment over the past few years. High penetration of VREs, however, requires additional costs caused by the intermittency, e. g. those for grid expansion, for deploying power storage systems, and for power curtailment. Thus the total system cost becomes larger than the cost measured simply by the traditional metric known as the levelized cost of electricity (LCOE), which has long been used for estimating the economics of the power sector. This paper proposes a methodology to assess these additional “system integration costs”, as well as to decompose them into several subcategories, using two complementary mathematical optimization models. It also applies the methodology to Japan's power system in 2030, in the aim of obtaining insights into the key factors that determine the changes in the power sector under high penetration of VREs. The results show that in a case with a solar PV capacity of 64GW and a wind capacity of 10GW, the system integration cost divided by the total power supply amounts to 0.41JPY/kWh. Reduction in the load factors of conventional power generation facilities accounts for the largest part of the system integration cost at 0.30JPY/kWh, highlighting the need for appropriate policy measures that ensure the adequacy of power systems.
Technical Report
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Technical Report "Global Energy System based on 100% Renewable Energy – Power Sector", published at the Global Renewable Energy Solutions Showcase event (GRESS), a side event of the COP23, Bonn, November 8, 2017 A global transition to 100% renewable electricity is feasible at every hour throughout the year and more cost effective than the existing system, which is largely based on fossil fuels and nuclear energy. Energy transition is no longer a question of technical feasibility or economic viability, but of political will. Existing renewable energy potential and technologies, including storage can generate sufficient and secure power to cover the entire global electricity demand by 2050 . The world population is expected to grow from 7.3 to 9.7 billion. The global electricity demand for the power sector is set to increase from 24,310 TWh in 2015 to around 48,800 TWh by 2050. Total levelised cost of electricity (LCOE) on a global average for 100% renewable electricity in 2050 is 52 €/MWh (including curtailment, storage and some grid costs), compared to 70 €/MWh in 2015. Solar PV and battery storage drive most of the 100% renewable electricity supply due to a significant decline in costs during the transition. Due to rapidly falling costs, solar PV and battery storage increasingly drive most of the electricity system, with solar PV reaching some 69%, wind energy 18%, hydropower 8% and bioenergy 2% of the total electricity mix in 2050 globally. Wind energy increases to 32% by 2030. Beyond 2030 solar PV becomes more competitive. Solar PV supply share increases from 37% in 2030 to about 69% in 2050. Batteries are the key supporting technology for solar PV. Storage output covers 31% of the total demand in 2050, 95% of which is covered by batteries alone. Battery storage provides mainly short-term (diurnal) storage, and renewable energy based gas provides seasonal storage. 100% renewables bring GHG emissions in the electricity sector down to zero, drastically reduce total losses in power generation and create 36 million jobs by 2050. Global greenhouse gas emissions significantly reduce from about 11 GtCO2eq in 2015 to zero emissions by 2050 or earlier, as the total LCOE of the power system declines. The global energy transition to a 100% renewable electricity system creates 36 million jobs by 2050 in comparison to 19 million jobs in the 2015 electricity system. Operation and maintenance jobs increase from 20% of the total direct energy jobs in 2015 to 48% of the total jobs in 2050 that implies more stable employment chances and economic growth globally. The total losses in a 100% renewable electricity system are around 26% of the total electricity demand, compared to the current system in which about 58% of the primary energy input is lost.
Article
There has been an intense discussion on the energy infrastructure cooperation in Northeast Asia. Most studies have focused on the technical feasibility of grid interconnection, deployment of renewable energy, and have ignored the quantitative analysis of social and economic benefits of these proposals. This study uses a computable general equilibrium model to evaluate the effects of energy interconnection in Northeast Asia. Key model development tasks include 1) constructing a new nesting structure, 2) econometrically estimating the constant elasticities of substitution (CES) between fossil- and non-fossil-power generation bundles, 3) developing a new base-case scenario, and 4) developing the policy scenario. We found that while Northeast Asia will benefit from energy interconnection development with higher GDP than in the base-case; there will be a trade-off between higher investment and lower consumption. Sector results and environmental implications in this region are also discussed.
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Our World gives several symptoms of climate change. Devastating draughts increase (negative for World (-)), global mean temperature increase (-), lightning strikes increase (-), sea ice cover melt (-), tree mortality increase (-), and forest degradation increase (-) have been observed for decades. They are all negative measures for continuity of life. Diversity of species has been decreasing, so that life on Earth is dying. Only responsible specie for this situation is humankind. This study presents a small footstep to prevent this situation. Modeling of a 100% renewable power grid on World (Global Grid) is eminent. Annual peak power load (Gigawatt: GW, Kilowatt: kW) (peak demand or load) forecasting in power demand side is crucial for global grid modeling. This study presents an experimental fuzzy inference system for the third core module (100 years’ power demand forecasting) of the first console (long term prediction) of Global Grid Peak Power Prediction System (G2P3S). The inputs (world population, global annual temperature anomalies °C) and the output (annual peak power load demand of Global Grid in GW) are modeled with seven triangular fuzzy input membership functions and seven constant output membership functions. The constant Sugeno-Type fuzzy inference system is used in the current experimental model. The maximum absolute percentage error (MAP) is calculated as 45%, and the mean absolute percentage error (MAPE) is found as 39% in this experimental study. The MAP and MAPE of the first core module model (Type 1) were 0,46 and 0,36. The MAP and MAPE of the second core module model (Interval Type 2) were 0,46 and 0,36. As a result, this study is a good start for the third core module of the first console on Global Grid Peak Power Prediction System research, development, demonstration, & deployment (RD3) project. This experimental study also warns humankind in this subject. Hopefully, the most polluting societies on our World such as China, United States, India, Russia, Japan, Germany, South Korea, and Canada take urgent actions to start to build the foundations of 100% renewable power global grid by organizing a global grid consortium.
Preprint
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Research attention on decentralized autonomous energy systems has increased exponentially in the past three decades, as demonstrated by the absolute number of publications and the share of these studies in the corpus of energy system modelling literature. This paper shows the status quo and future modelling needs for research on local autonomous energy systems. A total of 359 studies are roughly investigated, of which a subset of 123 in detail. The studies are assessed with respect to the characteristics of their methodology and applications, in order to derive common trends and insights. Most case studies apply to middle-income countries and only focus on the supply of electricity in the residential sector. Furthermore, many of the studies are comparable regarding objectives and applied methods. Local energy autonomy is associated with high costs, leading to levelized costs of electricity of 0.41 $/kWh on average. By analysing the studies, many improvements for future studies could be identified: the studies lack an analysis of the impact of autonomous energy systems on surrounding energy systems. In addition, the robust design of autonomous energy systems requires higher time resolutions and extreme conditions. Future research should also develop methodologies to consider local stakeholders and their preferences for energy systems.
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Although recent studies have shown that electricity systems with shares of wind and solar above 80% can be affordable, economists have raised concerns about market integration. Correlated generation from variable renewable sources depresses market prices, which can cause wind and solar to cannibalise their own revenues and prevent them from covering their costs from the market. This cannibalisation appears to set limits on the integration of wind and solar, and thus to contradict studies that show that high shares are cost effective. Here we show from theory and with simulation examples how market incentives interact with prices, revenue and costs for renewable electricity systems. The decline in average revenue seen in some recent literature is due to an implicit policy assumption that technologies are forced into the system, whether it be with subsidies or quotas. This decline is mathematically guaranteed regardless of whether the subsidised technology is variable or not. If instead the driving policy is a carbon dioxide cap or tax, wind and solar shares can rise without cannibalising their own market revenue, even at penetrations of wind and solar above 80%. The strong dependence of market value on the policy regime means that market value needs to be used with caution as a measure of market integration. Declining market value is not necessarily a sign of integration problems, but rather a result of policy choices.
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This is a corrigendum or addendum to the earlier published article "How can solid biomass contribute to the EU’s renewable energy targets 2020, 2030 and what are the GHG drivers and safeguards in energy- and forestry sectors?" in March 2021 in Renewable Energy journal
Technical Report
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This report investigates the potential for Cambodia to diversify its power supply technology mix, for greater energy security and sustainability benefits, given changing technology cost relativities. To date almost all Cambodian investment in the power sector has focused on largescale hydropower and coal-fired generation. The Royal Government of Cambodia (RGC) has indicated investing in sustainable energy is a priority [1]: recent technology cost developments mean the RGC can pursue energy security, access, reliability and affordability goals, at least in part, through increased investment in (non-large hydropower) renewable energy. This report is made possible thanks to the support of the Cambodian National Council for Sustainable Development, as well as the generous support of the American people through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Mekong Partnership for the Environment program, implemented by PACT The contents are the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the view of the Cambodian Government, USAID, the United States Government, or PACT.
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The current world situation under the coronavirus epidemic puts pressure on the commodity-based economy and signals the need to seek other options for diversifying export products while strengthening regional cooperation. Over the last four months of the epidemic period, Mongolia has temporarily suspended commodity transport to China which takes over 60% of total exports. Moreover, the fossil fuel market is in a critical situation, not only because of the current epidemic but also because the modern world has been gradually moving towards greener development. Today, we face two additional problems: strengthening the economic stability of the country and mitigating greenhouse gas emissions. This article analyses how renewable energy export could stabilize and support the country’s macroeconomic situation. The article proposes using green energy to diversify export options as soon as possible. This research work focused on the Northeast Asian Super Grid Initiative and Gobitec project by reviewing renewable energy impacts in environmental, economic, and social circumstances.
Conference Paper
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This paper investigates the effectiveness of renewable energy sources using solar and wind energy in the countries of Central and NorthEast Asia. The analysis was carried out in two stages. At the first stage, the efficiency of wind and solar installations in different climatic conditions was compared by the criterion of the cost of electricity. At the next stage of analysis, an optimization mathematical model was used to study the system that simultaneously includes wind and solar installations, backup energy sources and batteries. The model takes into account system effects caused by the interaction of the system elements between themselves and with the environment. It solves the problem of mathematical programming-the search for the minimum of the objective function (total costs) at some constrains. The model is used to study the economic efficiency of the large-scale construction of solar power plants in the Gobi Desert. It is shown that the joint use of solar and wind energy gives a positive economic effect, i.e. energy cost are less than with separate use of these energy sources. Under suitable wind conditions such systems reduces the cost of electricity by more than a quarter compared to the option of using solar energy only.
Article
In this paper, we used an optimal power generation mix (OPGM) model, as well as meteorological data from 2000 to 2017, to assess the cost of achieving 100% renewable electricity mix in 2050 in Japan. Although the potentials of variable renewable energies, such as wind and solar PV, have been estimated to be large in Japan, grid-related system costs become significant in the cases with very high shares of variable renewables. Particularly, two factors affect the overall costs: The cumulative installed capacity of offshore-wind power, and the required capacity of electricity storage systems. The former is dependent on the curtailment ratio of onshore-wind and solar PV, whereas the latter is determined by the short-time “windless and sunless” factor, i.e. the maximum number of successive days with very small wind and solar power output. The analyses presented in this study highlight the necessity of using long-term meteorological data when estimating the economics of high penetration of variable renewables, as well as the importance of considering the risk of power supply disruption.
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Research attention on decentralized autonomous energy systems has increased exponentially in the past three decades, as demonstrated by the absolute number of publications and the share of these studies in the corpus of energy system modelling literature. This paper shows the status quo and future modelling needs for research on local autonomous energy systems. A total of 359 studies are investigated, of which a subset of 123 in detail. The studies are assessed with respect to the characteristics of their methodology and applications, in order to derive common trends and insights. Most case studies apply to middle-income countries and only focus on the supply of electricity in the residential sector. Furthermore, many of the studies are comparable regarding objectives and applied methods. Local energy autonomy is associated with high costs, leading to levelized costs of electricity of 0.41 $/kWh on average. By analysing the studies, many improvements for future studies could be identified: the studies lack an analysis of the impact of autonomous energy systems on surrounding energy systems. In addition, the robust design of autonomous energy systems requires higher time resolutions and extreme conditions. Future research should also develop methodologies to consider local stakeholders and their preferences for energy systems.
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In recent years, several studies have been published focusing on the economics of the power sector under the high penetration of variable renewable energy (VRE) following the rapid expansion of VRE capacities worldwide. However, detailed analyses of the fluctuations in meteorological conditions have hitherto been scarce, despite the expectation that VRE output will be significantly affected by them. To fill this gap, we investigated the economic likelihood of achieving a zero-emission power system in Japan by 2050, using multi-annual meteorological data from 1990 to 2017. We used a detailed linear programming optimization model, as well as a method that uses cumulative residual loads (CRL), which proved to be useful for estimating required energy storage capacities and for understanding the complex substitution of power generation and storage technologies. The estimated unit cost for a 100% renewable electricity system depends heavily on meteorological conditions, standing at 20.9 JPY/kWh with a standard deviation of 1.2 JPY/kWh, which declines to 18.3 JPY/kWh with a standard deviation of 0.6 JPY/kWh for a system with hydrogen storage. The calculations indicate that the required storage capacity is determined mainly by the duration of “windless and sunless” periods, or “dark doldrums”, and the greatest risk under high VRE penetrations is the possibility of supply disruption during such periods. The results also highlight the considerable value of “firm capacities”, such as thermal and nuclear power generation, under a high share of VRE, although it should be noted that the profitability of these capacities may differ significantly from current situations, with large VRE outputs with negligible marginal costs.
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Globally, more than 740 million people live on islands which are often seen as ideal environments for the development of renewable energy systems. Hereby, they play the role to demonstrate technical solutions as well as political transition pathways of energy systems to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The growing number of articles on 100% renewable energy systems on islands is analyzed with a focus on technical solutions for transition pathways. Since the first “100% renewable energy systems on islands”-article in a scientific journal in 2004, 97 articles handling 100% renewable energy systems on small islands were published and are reviewed in this article. In addition, a review on 100% renewable energy systems on bigger island states is added. Results underline that solar PV as well as wind are the main technologies regarding 100% RES on islands. Not only for the use of biomass but for all RES area limitation on islands needs to be taken more seriously, based on full energy system studies and respective area demand. Furthermore, it is shown that there is still not the same common sense in the design approach including and starting at the energy needs as well as on multi-sectoral approach. The consideration of maritime transport, aviation, cooling demands, and water systems beyond seawater desalination is only poorly considered in existing studies. Future research should also focus on developing pathways to transform the existing conventional infrastructure stepwise into a fully renewable system regarding also the interconnections with the mainland and neighboring islands. This article is categorized under: Policy and Economics > Green Economics and Financing Energy Systems Economics > Economics and Policy Energy Systems Analysis > Economics and Policy Energy Systems Analysis > Systems and Infrastructure. © 2022 The Authors. WIREs Energy and Environment published by Wiley Periodicals LLC.
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This paper outlines how an existing energy system can be transformed into a 100% renewable energy system. The transition is divided into a number of key stages which reflect key radical technological changes on the supply side of the energy system. Ireland is used as a case study,but in reality this reflects many typical energy systems today which use power plants for electricity, individual boilers for heat, and oil for transport. The seven stages analysed are 1) reference, 2) introduction of district heating, 3) installation of small and large-scale heat pumps,4) reducing grid regulation requirements, 5) adding flexible electricity demands and electric vehicles, 6) producing synthetic methanol/DME for transport, and finally 7) using synthetic gas to replace the remaining fossil fuels. For each stage, the technical and economic performance of the energy system is calculated. The results indicate that a 100% renewable energy system can provide the same end-user energy demands as today’s energy system and at the same price. Electricity will be the backbone of the energy system, but the flexibility in today’s electricity sector will be transferred from the supply side of the demand side in the future. Similarly, due to changes in the type of spending required in a 100% renewable energy system, this scenario will result in the creation of 100,000 additional jobs in Ireland compared to an energy system like today’s. These results are significant since they indicate that the transition to a 100% renewable energy system can begin today, without increasing the cost of energy in the short- or long-term, if the costs currently forecasted for 2050 become a reality.
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PV and wind power are the major renewable power technologies in most regions on earth. Depending on the interaction of solar and wind resources, PV and wind power industry will become competitors or allies. Time resolved geospatial data of global horizontal irradiation and wind speeds are used to simulate the power feed-in of PV and wind power plants assumed to be installed on an equally rated power basis in every region of a 1°x1° mesh of latitude and longitude between 65°N and 65°S. An overlap of PV and wind power full load hours is defined as measure for the complementarity of both technologies and identified as ranging between 5% and 25% of total PV and wind power feed-in. Critical overlap full load hours are introduced as a measure for energy losses that would appear if the grid was dimensioned only for one power plant of PV or wind. In result, they do not exceed 9% of total feed-in but are mainly around 3% - 4%. Thus the two major renewable power technologies must be characterized by complementing each other.
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The economic pain of a flattening supply will trump the environment as a reason to curb the use of fossil fuels, say James Murray and David King.
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This study demonstrates – based on a dynamical simulation of a global, decentralized 100% renewable electricity supply scenario – that a global climate-neutral electricity supply based on the volatile energy sources photovoltaics (PV), wind energy (onshore) and concentrated solar power (CSP) is feasible at decent cost. A central ingredient of this study is a sophisticated model for the hourly electric load demand in >160 countries. To guarantee matching of load demand in each hour, the volatile primary energy sources are complemented by three electricity storage options: batteries, high-temperature thermal energy storage coupled with steam turbine, and renewable power methane (generated via the Power to Gas process) which is reconverted to electricity in gas turbines. The study determines – on a global grid with 1°x1° resolution – the required power plant and storage capacities as well as the hourly dispatch for a 100% renewable electricity supply under the constraint of minimized total system cost (LCOE). Aggregating the results on a national level results in an levelized cost of electricity (LCOE) range of 80-200 EUR/MWh (on a projected cost basis for the year 2020) in this very decentralized approach. As a global average, 142 EUR/MWh are found. Due to the restricted number of technologies considered here, this represents an upper limit for the electricity cost in a fully renewable electricity supply.
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A clear consensus exists in the German society that renewable energies have to play a dominant role in the future German energy supply system. However, many questions are still under discussion; for instance the relevance of the different technologies such as photovoltaic systems and wind energy converters installed offshore in the North Sea and the Baltic Sea. Also concerns exist about the cost of a future energy system mainly based on renewable energies. In order to be able to address the raised issues on a scientifically sound basis we have set up a new simulation model REMod-D (Renewable Energy Model-Deutschland) that models the energy balance of the electricity and heat sector including all renewable energy converters, storage components and loads for a future German energy system for a whole year based on an hourly energy balance. The target energy systems modeled use a high fraction up to 100% of renewable energies to cover the electricity and heat demand (heating and hot water). The model includes also energy retrofit of buildings as a measure to reduce future heat loads of the building sector. A mathematical-numerical optimizer is applied in order to identify system configurations with minimal overall annual cost. In this first part of a two-paper series we describe the methodology of the REMod-D model and discuss cost and performance values of all included components and in the second part we will discuss the results.
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We present a geographical assessment of the performance of crystalline silicon photovoltaic (PV) modules over Europe. We have developed a method that is based on a material specific analytical expression of the PV conversion efficiency, relative to nominal efficiency, as a function of module temperature and irradiance. This method is combined with a climate database that includes average daytime temperature and irradiance profiles. It is found that the geographical variation in ambient temperature and yearly irradiation causes a decrease in overall yearly PV performance from 3 to 13% relative to the performance under Standard Test Conditions, with the highest decrease found in the Mediterranean region. Based on the above results we developed a simplified linear expression of the relative PV module efficiency that is a simple function of yearly total irradiation and yearly average daytime temperature. The coefficients to the linear expression are found by fitting to the map resulting from the above-mentioned analytical approach. The prediction of total yearly PV output from this linear fit deviates less than 0·5% from the more detailed calculation, thus providing a faster and more simplified alternative to the yield estimate, in the case when only limited climate data are available. Copyright © 2008 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
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More than 20 countries in the world have already reached a maximum capacity in their coal production (peak coal production) such as Japan, the United Kingdom and Germany. China, home to the third largest coal reserves in the world, is the world's largest coal producer and consumer, making it part of the Big Six. At present, however, China's coal production has not yet reached its peak. In this article, logistic curves and gaussian curves are used to predict China's coal peak and the results show that it will be between the late 2020s and the early 2030s. Based on the predictions of coal production and consumption, China's net coal import could be estimated for coming years. This article also analyzes the impact of China's net coal import on the international coal market, especially the Asian market, and on China's economic development and energy security.
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In this paper, we argue that Asia's unique geography, abundant low-emission energy resources, rapid economic growth, and rising energy demands merit consideration of a Pan-Asian Energy Infrastructure. In our study, we focus on development of wind and solar resources in Australia, China, Mongolia, and Vietnam as the potential foundation for an electricity grid stretching from China to Australia. Hourly climate data for a full year are used to estimate renewable energy generation, electricity demand, generation capacity are projected forward to the year 2025, and economic dispatch in an international market is simulated to demonstrate cost benefits. Intermittency, connectivity, future dispatch orders, storage, line losses, and engineering and financial issues are all addressed.
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Each stage in the life cycle of coal-extraction, transport, processing, and combustion-generates a waste stream and carries multiple hazards for health and the environment. These costs are external to the coal industry and are thus often considered "externalities." We estimate that the life cycle effects of coal and the waste stream generated are costing the U.S. public a third to over one-half of a trillion dollars annually. Many of these so-called externalities are, moreover, cumulative. Accounting for the damages conservatively doubles to triples the price of electricity from coal per kWh generated, making wind, solar, and other forms of nonfossil fuel power generation, along with investments in efficiency and electricity conservation methods, economically competitive. We focus on Appalachia, though coal is mined in other regions of the United States and is burned throughout the world.
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