The rapid changes to the electricity system being wrought by distributed solar have utilities crying out, and they’ve poured much of their distributed solar angst into a chart being shared throughout the energy nerdocracy – the duck.
Until 2012, daily energy demand looked like a two-humped “camel,” with peaks mid-morning and early evening. The duck is the perfect vehicle for utility complaints because it casts the growth of distributed solar as a major technical problem (an area where most policy makers defer to utilities) rather than an economic one, where utility complaints can be contrasted with their customer’s desires for more local control over their energy use and costs. The utility companies crying “fowl” highlight a particular part of the duck chart: the dramatic ramp up in power generation on the light-green 2020 curve that happens in the late afternoon, as energy produced from solar wanes but energy demand rises.
Evidence suggests utilities are crying “wolf,” with several experts poking large holes in the utility argument. In other words, the technical challenges of the duck are manageable, largely with existing technology. The economic problems for utilities – stemming from an outdated business model – may not be so manageable.
More solar generation serving peak afternoon loads will out-bid competitors – utility-owned peaking gas power plants – because solar has zero fuel cost, so utilities will lose money even as customers save money. Utilities point to the duck chart as evidence that renewable energy development should be stopped on technical grounds. To paraphrase Mark Ferron, recently retired from the California Public Utilities Commission: it’s open season on the utility’s duck.
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John Farrell directs the Democratic Energy program at ILSR and he focuses on energy policy developments that best expand the benefits of local ownership and dispersed generation of renewable energy. Farrell also authored the landmark report Energy Self-Reliant States, which serves as the definitive energy atlas for the United States, detailing the state-by-state renewable electricity generation potential. The electric companies own program causes you to spike your load around 1pm to precool the home and then ultra low usage until 7pm and then over the next 2 hours your cooling and electric usage spikes then tapers off at night.
It’s a bit more complicated due to things like overall efficiency, cycle life and some other stuff.
Globally, humankind does not have a choice — we must make the transition to clean local energy, within a very few decades, as an environmental imperative to avert the worst consequences of climate change.
You keep showing your ignorance about the grid time and time again, and your own sources keep proving me right. Your yes2renewables link above shows that it only takes a few hours per month for peakers to rip you off enough to have a big impact on overall prices.
You keep pretending that a comparison of renewable reliability means you must look at just one source. Germany is not shutting down FF generation capacity, due to its renewables, which you keep claiming is possible without proof.
Hourly analysis shows how little solar and wind helped during the seasonal peak demand in January (see page 156). At present, some 28 power plants with a collective capacity of 7,000 megawatts – roughly equivalent to the capacity shutdown in Chancellor Merkel’s sudden nuclear phaseout in March 2011 – have been submitted for decommissioning. In some cases, the firms placing these submissions really just want money; if the Network Agency finds that the power plants are to crucial to be shut down (usually, it’s a matter of geography), the firms can demand special compensation to ensure profitability. The rising amounts of power from wind farms and solar-power plants coming on the grid have resulted in a capacity glut that has eroded wholesale power prices and the profitability of large power stations . That does not mean that the only way we can deal with supply shortages is by burning fossil fuel.
I’m saving this one (not cleaning up the links) so that I can show an example of the problem of replying from email to the Disqus folks. But the whole point is that if it is rare, its less expensive to cover, because if its rare, less reserves are needed to cover it.
Coal use would have fallen much faster except for high export demand from neighboring countries. Each of the trees in Neville Mars‘s solar forest is composed of a set of photovoltaic leaves mounted on an elegantly branching poll. Neville told Inhabitat that the tree and leaf design wasn’t a goal but came naturally as they tried to maximize the shaded surface that the structures provide. Please note that gratuitous links to your site are viewed as spam and may result in removed comments. I can't really see how efficient a solar panel is when it's being shaded by the other panels?? Lovely to look at, and who cares whether cars are recharging - just feed excess power to the local grid. This would be perfect for sunny San Diego except there's not enough wide open spaces to put parking. The basic idea, whether the "trees" are sculptural or not and whather they're so close together that they overshadow each other, is a pretty sound one. This still relies upon the scientists to make photovoltaics even vaguely worth using though, which they're currently not.
Our company, Agson Engineers also try to find out a more economic way to build green energy prefabricated container hotel or house, But the problem is the investment to solar panel power system is too high, after we install it, no one come to buy it. If the designer could think about to use Solar Panel and Wind Power intergreted system, that will make the whole cost coming down a lot. We recently got the following reader comment on a post of Andrew’s on electric vehicles, the smart grid, and residential solar power. Zachary Shahan is tryin' to help society help itself (and other species) one letter at a time. You are so right, America has untold, almost uncountable wealth available, it’s just that a few privileged power brokers control almost all of it, and our plan for the future, is much different than theirs. A 1.2 kW hour system will produce on average about 6 kilowatt-hours of electricity per day over the course of the year. Tom, apparently the program allows the owner of the 1.2kW system to sell their power to the utility and then get back more kWhs that they put in.

Electric vehicle owners, on the other hand, pay lower rates to recharge their vehicles overnight during off-peak hours.
And if you discount price as a reason, I would bet you can not give me a phone number for any dealer in all states but CA that has a Volt or Leaf for sale, call around – I put money down last week, MAY get my car in December. About the only people I can think that are DC are folks in undeveloped countries who are running a couple of lights and charging their cell phones. 1) Use limited monies to finance longer terms for EVs, reducing the monthly out-of-pocket to that of a modest priced ICEV. 5) Create low interest rate loans for putting solar canopies over parking lots as long as EV charge points are installed. May I draw your attention to the oddness of some of the names given by the major automakers to their EVs — just to give you a clue about the seriousness of their announced marketing intents. I’d be glad to be informed on any more odd names I might have left out (by the way, the videos on the i3 and the i8 are utterly boring — have a look at them!
A better gas tax, like the carbon tax, is sorely needed (to pay for the health and national security costs not included in the price today).
I agree with all the ideas about conserving, walking, biking, using public transportation, etc. People really want to get in their personal car, all by themselves, and drive where they want to, when they want to. If we try to force people to conserve by artificially racking up fuel prices via taxes we’re likely to see political push back and, likely, failure. We can make it easier for people to get around without personal cars by improving bike lanes, sidewalks, public transportation, etc. I suspect we will be more successful in cutting our oil use by focusing on a laser beam on creating affordable, fun to drive electric-powered vehicles (or any better technology which might emerge).
This could be some very cheap riding, get a lot of us off oil, and reduce our impact on the environment to an acceptable level. World-class electric car & solar energy deep dives, and more fun than should be legal. Expand your insights into the core issues at the heart of wind O&M for the coming years.
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Solar Trees Arrays We Delivered On-Site For Fast Plug and Pay Installation Solar Tree structure are designed for the following applications: Shading vehicles from the sun and at the same time generate Green energy. IQUPS Battery Backups Prevent Accidents at Critical Traffic Signals Increase the public safety and reduced traffic congestion by allowing traffic lights to function even during a power failure. In the traditional grid operating model, accommodating this ramp-up in energy use requires a lot of standby power from expensive to operate, rapid-response power plants. By 2020 in the California example, solar production at noon will also be sufficient to cut into power usually provided by so-called “baseload” power plants (e.g.
But it’s in the belly of the beast we find the real utility problem: energy demand displaced by solar represents lost market share for utilities as their customers switch to sunshine. His seminal paper, Democratizing the Electricity System, describes how to blast the roadblocks to distributed renewable energy generation, and how such small-scale renewable energy projects are the key to the biggest strides in renewable energy development.
New Jersey residents are currently paying over 19 cents per KWH between delivery and supply charges.
WInter is not a good time for solar or wind where wind is currently located in California in the passes.
After a few percent penetration, solar no longer reduces peak demand, and beyond that the duck curve shows that the total cost of electricity generation goes down by only 3c per kWh of PV generation. If your arguments were true, Germany would not be the most reliable source of electric power, far greater than reliability in the US.
They cannot do so on their own; first, Germany’s Network Agency has to give its approval based on an estimation of how critically a given power plant is needed to ensure supply quality. These power stations have been hardest hit because they are designed to meet peak daytime demand which is when wind- and solar-generated electricity is available. Whether you need 20GW of reserves once a year or 20 times a year, construction and staffing costs remain the same.
That week in Jan, Germany needed all of its conventional capacity and still had to import, because renewables had very little output.
Demand is falling as the efficiency component of the Energiewende delivers outstanding results as expected. The fossil-nuke shills and ideologues try to paint this as the fault of renewables – which is a lie like most everything else they produce.
His photovoltaic grove serves a dual function, acting as a go-to source for clean renewable energy while providing a shady spot for cars to park as they charge. The base of each trunk features an power outlet that can be used to juice up your eco ride as you run errands.

Although the efficiency of overlapping photovoltaic panels initially raised some concerns, Neville went on to explain that the leaves rotate with the sun to ensure maximum efficiency.
There's nothing overly beautiful about a car park so we might as well double up the use of space by putting elevated solar panels there. If any company or group could help a bit solve the fast charging within few minutes and keep the car running more than 300km, in that case, the idea will come ture. After that, we have to consider to use Wind Power system, which is a lot cheaper than solar panel. Those are fixed dollars, not dollars that will rise with inflation, the $8.33 per month is locked in.
And at $33 – $46K, not really an option for an average wage earner when 40+ MPG vehicles are available for $16K. Pay the utility company small money to collect the monthly payment as part of their regular bill. According to Andrew Ferrick, battery-powered vehicles will account for 15 to 20 percent of all vehicle sales by the year 2030. If you require further details regarding the transaction data, please contact the supplier directly. A typical traffic signal intersection experiences eight to ten local power outages annually.
But the substitution of local solar power to meet local energy needs affects the demand for mid-day energy from the grid.
CA is not the best place for wind, but the summer diurnal matches the solar output so well.
In order to get a good mix, a wide geographical area and a better mix of uncorrelated sources, or more sources correlated with load are desirable.
Water, sewerage, hospitals, police stations, street lighting and other 24-hour services, plus pumped storage, don’t at first sight generate that level of demand. You said there has to be some extremely high level of reliability, like 1 hour in 10 years.
Yes, I admit that PV initially reduced the net load peak by a bit, but it isn’t doing so any further now.
The solar forest is certainly an aesthetic step up from your standard sun-baked concrete parking lot, and serves as great inspiration for integrating solar technology with natural forms. Putting aside the fact that solar panels are too expensive, and that only nuclear power could support a growing fkleet of electric cars, this will create an extraordinary heat-sink that will destroy life.
Plus the shade will help keep cars cool and stop the tarmac heating up, which only adds to the fact that cities are so much hotter than rural locations.
But as the same time, we still need to consider the cost of solar panel, it is 3.5USD per Watt, which is still too high.
Their prediction may reach fruition sooner than later, thanks to developments like those pushed forward by Solade Concepts.
Our Solar Charging Station is able to accomodate both electrical currents for any EV charge connection. With battery backup 3 power, some or all the traffic control signals can continue to operate. The daily demand curve transforms, from a camel (orange line) to a (forecast) “duck” (bottom green line). The problem for utilities is that they’ve continued to pour money into a twentieth century grid system (inflexible, centralized power plants with long-distance transmission lines) even as the grid has been transformed by distributed, local renewable energy. They need to run some power lines out there from Duluth or something, Upper Peninsula is pretty remote. In particular, wind is forecast and probabilities for reserves are a function of the accuracy of the forecast. Zach is recognized globally as a solar energy, electric car, energy storage, and wind energy expert. To charge my car to run to half it’s capacity for one hour would therefore require your solar array to run for approx 40 hours at 100% of it design performance.
When utility power is restored, the generator shuts off and signal operation is automatically returned to the normal power source. This seamless switchover to battery power increases public safety and eliminates the need to dispatch police or other service personnel to direct traffic. Since you asked, I thought I might explain why the frequency (and probability) of events dictates reserves. Plant trees--the very best possible converters of the sun's energy, through photosynthesis. If all traffic signals were converted to LEDs, the battery backup system would allow full operation of the traffic signals during a power outage, thus alleviating traffic congestion.
There are far fewer peak hours and a lower peak.The effect of wind and solar in Germany reduced the market for nighttime to daytime pumped storage.
When the generator kicks in on the IQUPS1800, the lights will fully function for 25 to 40 hours, depending on the load at the intersection. Since the peak is shifted to later, and wind correlates with those evening later peaks… that is the crux of your whole fallacy. Intersections have been converted to new LED signal lights utilizing more efficient, LED (light emitting diode) lamps. Starting with ignoring multiple renewable sources and extending to not understanding the correlations. The new lamps cut the amount of electricity used by each light from as much as 150 watts to between 10 to 25 watts. Because LEDs use so much less electricity, it is now technically possible to provide battery backup power to alike.

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