The share of hydroelectric power in electricity generation is set to decrease as solar and wind come to dominate. Yet, hydropower has a crucial role to play in providing flexibility and storage for grids increasingly running on variable renewable energy resources
Often overlooked by governments, a lack of effective market mechanism is holding new hydro and pumped storage back
STORAGE NEEDS Electricity grids will require larger and longer storage options as the share of variable wind and solar generation grows
VITAL ROLE Hydropower is a dispatchable, flexible source of electricity so can replace traditional polluting forms of energy
KEY QUOTE Once you have no combined-cycle gas plants and a week with no wind, batteries won’t do anything for you ...
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The bulk storage of electricity as a flexibility tool will become economically viable with the growing availability of large volumes of low-cost renewable energy. Crushed hot rocks could provide a cheap storage solution
Direct tariffs should be promoted and financed by large-scale donors to accelerate the adoption of renewables in developing countries, argue experts from Dalberg, a global advisory firm. This would encourage the release of extra capital by guaranteeing a market and an energy price for clean energy sources
A new transmission line across the Baltic Sea shows that a more integrated European power network is not only steadily evolving, but that innovative approaches to infrastructure design can bring down the cost of the energy transition.
A recent announcement to support offshore wind projects off the state of Victoria shows how the local government has grown tired of waiting for federal leadership on the energy transition
Electricity networks are buckling under the impact of increasingly frequent and severe climate events. Given the amount of climate change already locked into the atmosphere, this is an issue that will only worsen, forcing assets and infrastructure to adapt. The tools to deal with the problem are available—but it will take a lot of money and political will to avert disaster
The ups and downs in demand for electricity have long made the flexible operation of power systems a must, so increasing that flexibility to also accommodate variations in supply from renewables is not that big a challenge. Having a clear definition of the term can only help the energy transition
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