Conference Paper

Energy Storage in Global and Transcontinental Energy Scenarios: A Critical Review

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Abstract

There are a fast growing number of energy scenarios based on high shares of renewable energy (RE). The types of these scenarios range from bottom-up, cost-optimized simulations with a high level of technological accuracy to top-down, macroeconomic assessments including all sectors contributing to national economies, to descriptive storylines capturing sociological uncertainties and to visions of united global energy systems. However, reviewed global energy scenarios 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.

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... The conclusion from the finding is that even the near to fully renewable energy scenarios with global scope have not captured in detailed temporal resolution, how exactly the energy system would work. However, continent-wide hourly analyzes and real weather based cost-optimized simulations imply that electricity demand can be met at costcompetitive total system levelized cost of electricity for every hour of the year using only renewable energy sources [152]. ...
... Applying system-wide thinking can help in identifying the achievable system integration synergies; instead of looking at power, heat, mobility and industry sectors separately, they can be assessed as a whole in order to reveal the hidden flexibility in the system. [152]. In future, as less fuels are burned, the flexibility once provided by the fossil fuels must be then provided by other means. ...
Thesis
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Energy scenarios are used as a tool to examine credible future states and pathways. The one who constructs a scenario defines the framework in which the possible outcomes exist. The credibility of a scenario depends on its compatibility with real world experiences, and on how well the general information of the study, methodology, and originality and processing of data are disclosed. In the thesis, selected global energy scenarios’ transparency and desirability from the society’s point of view were evaluated based on literature derived criteria. The global energy transition consists of changes to social conventions and economic development in addition to technological development. Energy solutions are economic and ethical choices due to far-reaching impacts of energy decision-making. Currently the global energy system is mostly based on fossil fuels, which is unsustainable over the long-term due to various reasons: negative climate change impacts, negative health impacts, depletion of fossil fuel reserves, resource-use conflicts with water management and food supply, loss of biodiversity, challenge to preserve ecosystems and resources for future generations, and inability of fossil fuels to provide universal access to modern energy services. Nuclear power and carbon capture and storage cannot be regarded as sustainable energy solutions due to their inherent risks and required long-term storage. The energy transition is driven by a growing energy demand, decreasing costs of renewables, modularity and scalability of renewable technologies, macroeconomic benefits of using renewables, investors’ risk awareness, renewable energy related attractive business opportunities, almost even distribution of solar and wind resources on the planet, growing awareness of the planet’s environmental status, environmental movements and tougher environmental legislation. Many of the investigated scenarios identified solar and wind power as a backbone for future energy systems. The scenarios, in which the solar and wind potentials were deployed in largest scale, met best the set out sustainability criteria. In future research, energy scenarios’ transparency can be improved by better disclosure on who has ordered the study, clarifying the funding, clearly referencing to used sources and indicating processed data, and by exploring how variations in cost assumptions and deployment of technologies influence on the outcomes of the study.
... Thus, new flexibility sources such as, energy storages (ES), electric vehicles, demand response and virtual power plant (VPP) play an important role in system operation. As ESS is becoming more affordable, it was envisaged that the capacity will reach 250GW globally by 2030 [2]. ...
Conference Paper
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Due to the high penetration of non-dispatchable renewable sources, the power system is facing a challenge in operational flexibility. As more and more renewables are replacing conventional generations, the integration of energy storage systems (ESS) is crucial in providing a faster response in balancing and grid services. However, ESS, of today, faces many regulatory and market challenges in order to be deployed in the power system operation. This is also hindering the progress towards the decarbonisation of smart grid networks. This paper proposes ESS as a possible "Flexibility Resources" and its potential role in the future smart grid network. This will further support the regulatory authority to define this classification for ESS to overcome the barriers and to procure and valorise the range of services that the ESS can provide. The potential benefits of ESS as a Flexibility Resource will facilitate increased participation of storage in different electricity markets and improve the flexibility of smart grid operation with high penetration of renewables. Moreover, it will solve the ownership issues and hence, will be beneficial for all the stakeholders involved.
... Such extension will not be easy, as the transportation sectors are still not sufficiently disaggregated in THEMIS to study a change in their technology. Meanwhile, other references can provide information on orders of magnitude of storage and transmission (Berrill et al., 2016;Koskinen and Breyer, 2016;Scholz et al., 2017). Applying REMix, the same optimization model that is used in the Greenpeace report, Scholz et al. (2017) show that the cost of storage and transmission combined is 4.6% of total cost in a business-as-usual scenario and 10.6% in a 100% renewable one. ...
... This in turn indicates a major systemic change in the energy system as well. We consider increasing the flexibility of the energy system as an important element in the energy transition (Koskinen and Breyer, 2016;Child et al., 2018) and as an important enabler of the transition, for which reason it is also given attention in our analysis. ...
Conference Paper
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The aim of the paper is to discuss how quantitative modelling of energy scenarios for sustainable energy transition pathways can be made more realistic by taking into account insights from the socio-technical and related literatures. The proposition is that an enriched modelling approach would focus not just on technology development and deployment, but also on feedback loops, learning processes, policy and governance, behavioural changes, the interlinkages between the energy sector and other economic sectors, and infrastructure development. The paper discusses a range of socio-technical concepts with a view to how they can enrich the understanding and modelling of highly complex dynamic systems such as flexible energy systems with high shares of variable renewable energy. In this context, application of system dynamics modelling (SDM) for the analysis of energy transitions is also introduced by describing the differences between SDM and a traditional modelling approach that uses econometric and linear programming methods. A conceptual framework for this type of modelling is provided by using causal loop diagrams. The diagrams illustrate the endogenous approach of SDM – understanding and modelling the structure of a system, which is responsible for its dynamic behaviour. SDM can also capture the co-evolution of economic, policy, technology, and behavioural factors over sufficiently long time periods, which is necessary for the analysis of transition pathway dynamics. In this regard, the paper summarises how socio-technical concepts can be approached in SDM and why they are relevant for the analysis of flexibility in energy systems. From a computational point of view, it could be beneficial to combine SDM with technologically detailed energy system optimisation models and that could be a way forward for achieving more realistic, non-linear quantitative modelling of sustainable energy transitions.
... Such extension will not be easy, as the transportation sectors are still not sufficiently disaggregated in THEMIS to study a change in their technology. Meanwhile, other references can provide information on orders of magnitude of storage and transmission (Berrill et al., 2016;Koskinen and Breyer, 2016;Scholz et al., 2017). Applying REMix, the same optimization model that is used in the Greenpeace report, Scholz et al. (2017) show that the cost of storage and transmission combined is 4.6% of total cost in a business-as-usual scenario and 10.6% in a 100% renewable one. ...
Preprint
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The EROI –for Energy Returned On Invested– of an energy technology measures its ability to provide energy efficiently. Previous studies draw a link between the affluence of a society and the EROI of its energy system, and show that EROIs of renewables are lower than those of fossil fuels. Logically, concerns have been expressed that system-wide EROI may decrease during a renewable energy transition. First, I explain theoretically that the EROIs of renewables themselves could then decrease as energy-efficient fossil fuels would be replaced by less energy-efficient renewables in the supply-chain. Then, using the multiregional input-output model THEMIS, I estimate the evolution of EROIs and prices of electric technologies from 2010 to 2050 for different scenarios. Global EROI of electricity is predicted to go from 12 in 2010 to 11 in 2050 in a business-as-usual scenario, but down to 6 in a 100% renewable one. Finally, I study the economic implication of a declining EROI. An inverse relation between EROI and price is suggested empirically, even though theory shows that both quantities may move in the same direction. For pedagogical overview, see notebook: bit.ly/futureEROI
... The key advantage of the LUT results is the hourly modelling of the energy system for an entire year based on RE resource data for solar, wind and hydro on a high spatial resolution of 0.45º × 0.45º or higher and consequent solving of a least cost target function. None of the benchmarking energy scenarios is performed on an hourly resolution for an entire year [36]. However, this is of high importance since an energy system mainly based on PV and wind energy is characterised by a high degree of intermittency. ...
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This paper puts forward the vision that a natural future stage of the electricity network could be a grid spanning the whole planet and connecting most of the large power plants in the world: this is the "Global Grid". The main driving force behind the Global Grid will be the harvesting of remote renewable sources, and its key infrastructure element will be the high capacity long transmission lines. Wind farms and solar power plants will supply load centers with green power over long distances. This paper focuses on the introduction of the concept, showing that a globally interconnected network can be technologically feasible and economically competitive. We further highlight the multiple opportunities emerging from a global electricity network such as smoothing the renewable energy supply and electricity demand, reducing the need for bulk storage, and reducing the volatility of the energy prices. We also discuss possible investment mechanisms and operating schemes. Among others, we envision in such a system a global power market and the establishment of two new coordinating bodies, the "Global Regulator" and the "Global System Operator".
Article
The huge solar resources in the MENA countries (Middle East and North Africa), significant improvements in concentrating solar power (CSP) technology and in power transmission technologies, and the urgent need to remove carbon emissions from the European (EU) energy system lead to an increased interest in an EU-MENA electricity grid interconnection. As contribution to the current discussions about DESERTEC, MedGrid and other initiatives this article describes the approach and results of an analysis of possible solar electricity import corridors from MENA to Europe including Turkey. The study is based on solar energy potentials of the MENA countries identified by remote sensing, reviewed performance and cost data of generation and transmission technologies, and geographic data and information systems (GIS) for the spatial analysis. CSP plants combined with high temperature heat storage and high voltage direct current (HVDC) overhead lines and sea cables represent the key technologies for implementing this promising option for renewable energy import/export. The total technical solar power generation potential from remote sensing analysis in the seven MENA countries considered was calculated to about 538,000TWh/yr. This huge potential implies that less than 0.2% of the land suitable for CSP plants would be enough to supply 15% of the electricity demand expected in Europe in the year 2050. A GIS analysis of potential future HVDC corridors led to the description and characterization of 33 possible import routes to main European centers of demand.
Article
Sowohl die Ressourcenproblematik als auch die drohenden Ausmaße der Klimaänderung lassen einen Umstieg auf andere Energiequellen langfristig unausweichlich erscheinen und mittelfristig als dringend geboten. Unabhängig von der Frage, auf welchem Niveau sich der Energiebedarf stabilisieren lässt, bleibt dabei zu klären, welche Möglichkeiten sich aus technischer und wirtschaftlicher Sicht in Zukunft zur Deckung unseres Energiebedarfs anbieten. Eine aussichtsreiche Option besteht in der Nutzung regenerativer Energien in ihrer ganzen Vielfalt. Die Arbeit "Szenarien zur zukünftigen Stromversorgung, kostenoptimierte Variationen zur Versorgung Europas und seiner Nachbarn mit Strom aus erneuerbaren Energien" konzentriert sich mit der Stromversorgung auf einen Teilaspekt der Energieversorgung, der zunehmend an Wichtigkeit gewinnt und als ein Schlüssel zur nachhaltigen Energieversorgung interpretiert werden kann. Die Stromversorgung ist heute weltweit für etwa die Hälfte des anthropogenen CO2-Ausstoßes verantwortlich. In dieser Arbeit wurden anhand verschiedener Szenarien Möglichkeiten einer weitgehend CO2–neutralen Stromversorgung für Europa und seine nähere Umgebung untersucht, wobei das Szenariogebiet etwa 1,1 Mrd. Einwohner und einen Stromverbrauch von knapp 4000 TWh/a umfasst. Dabei wurde untersucht, wie die Stromversorgung aufgebaut sein sollte, damit sie möglichst kostengünstig verwirklicht werden kann. Diese Frage wurde beispielsweise für Szenarien untersucht, in denen ausschließlich heute marktverfügbare Techniken berücksichtigt wurden. Auch der Einfluss der Nutzung einiger neuer Technologien, die bisher noch in Entwicklung sind, auf die optimale Gestaltung der Stromversorgung, wurde anhand einiger Beispiele untersucht. Die Konzeption der zukünftigen Stromversorgung sollte dabei nach Möglichkeit objektiven Kriterien gehorchen, die auch die Vergleichbarkeit verschiedener Versorgungsansätze gewährleisten. Dafür wurde ein Optimierungsansatz gewählt, mit dessen Hilfe sowohl bei der Konfiguration als auch beim rechnerischen Betrieb des Stromversorgungssystems weitgehend auf subjektive Entscheidungsprozesse verzichtet werden kann. Die Optimierung hatte zum Ziel, für die definierte möglichst realitätsnahe Versorgungsaufgabe den idealen Kraftwerks- und Leitungspark zu bestimmen, der eine kostenoptimale Stromversorgung gewährleistet. Als Erzeugungsoptionen werden dabei u.a. die Nutzung Regenerativer Energien durch Wasserkraftwerke, Windenergiekonverter, Fallwindkraftwerke, Biomassekraftwerke sowie solare und geothermische Kraftwerke berücksichtigt. Abhängig von den gewählten Randbedingungen ergaben sich dabei unterschiedliche Szenarien. Das Ziel der Arbeit war, mit Hilfe unterschiedlicher Szenarien eine breite Basis als Entscheidungsgrundlage für zukünftige politische Weichenstellungen zu schaffen. Die Szenarien zeigen Optionen für eine zukünftige Gestaltung der Stromversorgung auf, machen Auswirkungen verschiedener – auch politischer – Rahmenbedingungen deutlich und stellen so die geforderte Entscheidungsgrundlage bereit. Als Grundlage für die Erstellung der Szenarien mussten die verschiedenen Potentiale erneuerbarer Energien in hoher zeitlicher und räumlicher Auflösung ermittelt werden, mit denen es erstmals möglich war, die Fragen einer großräumigen regenerativen Stromversorgung ohne ungesicherte Annahmen anhand einer verlässlichen Datengrundlage anzugehen. Auch die Charakteristika der verschiedensten Energiewandlungs- und Transportsysteme mussten studiert werden und sind wie deren Kosten und die verschiedenen Potentiale in der vorliegenden Arbeit ausführlich diskutiert. Als Ausgangsszenario und Bezugspunkt dient ein konservatives Grundszenario. Hierbei handelt es sich um ein Szenario für eine Stromversorgung unter ausschließlicher Nutzung erneuerbarer Energien, die wiederum ausschließlich auf heute bereits entwickelte Technologien zurückgreift und dabei für alle Komponenten die heutigen Kosten zugrundelegt. Dieses Grundszenario ist dementsprechend auch als eine Art konservative Worst-Case-Abschätzung für unsere Zukunftsoptionen bei der regenerativen Stromversorgung zu verstehen. Als Ergebnis der Optimierung basiert die Stromversorgung beim Grundszenario zum größten Teil auf der Stromproduktion aus Windkraft. Biomasse und schon heute bestehende Wasserkraft übernehmen den überwiegenden Teil der Backup-Aufgaben innerhalb des – mit leistungsstarker HGÜ (Hochspannungs–Gleichstrom–Übertragung) verknüpften – Stromversorgungsgebiets. Die Stromgestehungskosten liegen mit 4,65 €ct / kWh sehr nahe am heute Üblichen. Sie liegen niedriger als die heutigen Preisen an der Strombörse. In allen Szenarien – außer relativ teuren, restriktiv ”dezentralen” unter Ausschluss großräumig länderübergreifenden Stromtransports – spielt der Stromtransport eine wichtige Rolle. Er wird genutzt, um Ausgleichseffekte bei der dargebotsabhängigen Stromproduktion aus erneuerbaren Quellen zu realisieren, gute kostengünstige Potentiale nutzbar zu machen und um die Speicherwasserkraft sowie die dezentral genutzte Biomasse mit ihrer Speicherfähigkeit für großräumige Backup-Aufgaben zu erschließen. Damit erweist sich der Stromtransport als einer der Schlüssel zu einer kostengünstigen Stromversorgung. Dies wiederum kann als Handlungsempfehlung bei politischen Weichenstellungen interpretiert werden, die demnach gezielt auf internationale Kooperation im Bereich der Nutzung erneuerbarer Energien setzen und insbesondere den großräumigen Stromtransport mit einbeziehen sollten. Die Szenarien stellen detaillierte und verlässliche Grundlagen für wichtige politische und technologische Zukunftsentscheidungen zur Verfügung. Sie zeigen, dass bei internationaler Kooperation selbst bei konservativen Annahmen eine rein regenerative Stromversorgung möglich ist, die wirtschaftlich ohne Probleme zu realisieren wäre und verweisen den Handlungsbedarf in den Bereich der Politik. Eine wesentliche Aufgabe der Politik läge darin, die internationale Kooperation zu organisieren und Instrumente für eine Umgestaltung der Stromversorgung zu entwickeln. Dabei kann davon ausgegangen werden, dass nicht nur ein sinnvoller Weg zu einer CO2–neutralen Stromversorgung beschritten würde, sondern sich darüber hinaus ausgezeichnete Entwicklungsperspektiven für die ärmeren Nachbarstaaten der EU und Europas eröffnen. ---------------- Both the resources problem and the extent of the looming climate change make a change of course in humankind’s use of energy sources appear inevitable. Independent of the question of the level on which energy consumption can be stabilized, clarification of the technical and economic possibilities for the future energy supply is necessary. Promising options exist in the use of renewable energies in their whole variety. The thesis "Szenarien zur zukünftigen Stromversorgung, kostenoptimierte Variationen zur Versorgung Europas und seiner Nachbarn mit Strom aus erneuerbaren Energien" concentrates on the electricity supply as a partial aspect of the energy supply. Electricity supply is increasingly gaining in importance and can be seen as a key to a sustainable energy supply; it is currently responsible for approximately half of the world-wide anthropogenic CO2 emissions. In this research/study possibilities of a largely CO2 neutral electricity supply for Europe and its closer neighbourhood were examined on the basis of different scenarios, whereby the scenario area actually covers about 1.1 billion inhabitants and an electricity consumption of about 4000 TWh/a. The focus was the question of how the electricity supply should be developed to lead to the most economic solution. This question was considered, for example, for scenarios based only on techniques available today. Also examined was the possible influence which the use of some new technologies – in so far as they are still under development – could have on the future options of the electricity supply, on the basis of some examples. The conception of the future electricity supply was aimed to meet criteria of the greatest possible objectivity, to provide genuine comparability of different resulting scenarios. To achieve this aim a mathematical optimization approach was implemented, thus ensuring the avoidance of subjective decision-making processes during the configuration of the supply system, whilst optimizing the use of all system components. The aim of the optimization was to find the ideal system of power plants and transmission systems to provide the least cost solution for a realistic electricity demand close to the current demand. As options for the electricity production the use of renewable energies with hydro-electric power plants, wind energy converters, energy towers, biomass power stations as well as solar and geothermal power stations are considered amongst others. Dependent on the selected preconditions, this resulted in different scenarios. The main goal of the thesis was to create a set of different scenarios in order to establish a broad basis for future political decisions. The scenarios present options for a future organization of the electricity supply and point out the impact of different - also political - conditions. Before calculating the scenarios, the different potentials of renewable energies and their characteristics had to be determined in high temporal and spatial resolution. This set up a reliable data basis allowing answers to the questions associated with a spacious renewable electricity supply, without resorting to unverified assumptions. The characteristics of the different systems for energy conversion and transport also had to be studied and are discussed together with their associated costs and the potentials within the dissertation. The starting point is a conservative base case scenario. It is a scenario for an electricity supply relying entirely on renewable energies, all of which are based on technologies available today and calculated with today's costs of all components. This base case scenario can accordingly be understood as a kind of conservative Worst Case estimation for our future options of a renewable electricity supply. As a result of the optimization for the base case scenario, the largest proportion of the electricity production is from wind energy. Biomass and currently existing hydropower take over the predominant part of the back-up function within the supply area which is interlinked with powerful HVDC (high voltage direct current) transmission. The calculated costs of electricity production and HVDC transmission are about 4.65 €ct/kWh and therefore relatively close to the current costs of electricity produced with conventional technologies. They are actually lower than today's prices on the electricity stock exchange. In all scenarios - except the relatively expensive restrictively "decentralized" ones which exclude cross-national electricity transport via HVDC - the electricity transport plays an important role. It is used in order to realize smoothing effects of the weather-dependent electricity production from renewable sources, to make the best production sites accessible for common use and to enable the use of hydropower as well as the decentralized biomass with its inherent storage capability for common duties within the supply area. Thus electricity transport proves to be one of the keys to an economical electricity supply. This again can be interpreted as a recommendation for action for political decision-makers, who thus should deliberately pursue international co-operation in the field of renewable energy use and include in particular the issue of international electricity transmission. The scenarios constitute a detailed and reliable basis for crucial political and technological decisions about our future electricity supply. They show that - even under conservative assumptions - an exclusively renewable electricity supply is possible with international co-operation and could be realized without any significant economic problems. They place the responsibility for future action in the field of policy. A substantial task of the policy-makers would be to organize the necessary international co-operation and to develop legal and economic instruments for a transformation of our electricity supply. Thereby, not only a reasonable path to a CO2-neutralen electricity supply would be taken, but beyond that excellent perspectives for the development of poorer neighbour states of the European Union and Europe could be opened.
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Who's Getting Ready For Zero? A Report on the State of Play of Zero Carbon Modeling
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P. Allen, P. James, I. Bottoms, and F. Yamin, "Who's Getting Ready For Zero? A Report on the State of Play of Zero Carbon Modeling," 2015. [Online]. Available: http://track0.org/works/whos-getting-ready-for-zero-full-report/. CAT -Centre for Alternative Technology, Track 0, Machynlleth. [Accessed: 18-Nov-2015].
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Assessing the Missed Benefits of Countries ' National Contributions -Quantifying Potential Co-Benefits
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