8.2 The Climate Resilient Grid: A Report on the Forum on Energy, Climate, and the Grid

Wednesday, 10 January 2018: 2:00 PM
Room 15 (ACC) (Austin, Texas)
Marjorie McGuirk, CASE Consultants International, Asheville, NC; and J. Dissen and S. Herring

The evolution of the energy system over the next 25 years will be spectacularly complex compared to the steady-state progress of the previous 100 years. Calling renewable energy “a foregone conclusion,” many industry representatives are raising the level of investment in efficient transmission lines and new systems of microgrids. Climate and environmental intelligence can provide important information in this decision-making process, with the grid on the frontlines. "The Climate Resilient Grid: A forum on Energy, Climate, and the Grid," was convened to learn from the energy industry what environmental and climate data and information is needed for moving forward in an integrated energy future.

Weather, climate, and the environment impact every component of the energy system. Broadly speaking the energy system consists of power generation, transmission and distribution lines, and consumption components. A power system is instantaneous supply and demand. Each component requires advanced analytics that maximize efficiency. Weather and climate factor into both operating the components efficiently, and into planning the energy assets effectively in the long term. Weather is the primary factor in power outages. Intense and frequent storms affect operations and influence decisions on investments in the long term. To provide power no matter what the weather is doing, industry builds resiliency in the short term by hardening assets in-place, and in the long term by relocating assets at risk. The industry leaders in this forum stated that they need to make new investments to improve both short and long-term resilience. Investing means making the rate case. An area that they need support is bringing the information data case to regulators to convince them of costs of resiliency.

The authors will present results from the Forum, to inform weather, water, and climate scientists of the data needs in the new energy future.

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