- Developing an inventory of solar, wind, and hydro (precipitation) data sets to establish a current climatology (1996 -2015) of renewable energy resources;
- Conducting high resolution model sensitivity studies using downscaled output from a diverse subset of Earth System Models (ESMs) to project the near-future renewable energy resource distribution in NY;
- Analyzing the near future (2016 – 2035) and mid-future (2036 - 2055) scenario results for changes in the state’s potential renewable energy distribution and variability;
- Developing information to enable NYSERDA to determine how the future availability and redistribution of wind, solar, and hydropower will affect the state’s efforts to meet targeted and mandated renewable energy generation and GHG reduction goals; and
- Communicate preliminary and final project results to interested stakeholders in government, academia, utility groups, and industry.
Project work will assess the potential changes and associated uncertainties given available historic data sets and the latest ESM model projections available from the Climate Model Inter-comparison Project-Phase 5 ensemble. Using a high resolution (4 km) mesoscale model, dynamic downscaling of these meteorological fields will provide insight into how regional scale weather patterns influencing NY’s climate regimes (mesoscale phenomena such as the sea breeze) will be affected by climate change in the next 40 years, and how this in turn may alter hub height wind speeds, cloud fraction and cloud distribution (e.g., irradiance), and precipitation and stream flow. For this presentation, we will present preliminary results from the analyses highlighted above.
Results from this work will provide policymakers, local, state, and federal agencies, utilities, the NY Independent System Operator, other interested citizens and organizations with 1) an integrated assessment of the current state of renewable energy resources in the NY, and 2) quantitative estimates and qualitative information as to the potential temporal and spatial redistribution of wind, solar, and hydropower resources developed from modeling sensitivity studies performed for a near-future (2016 - 2035) and mid-future (2036 - 2055) climate change scenarios--Representative Concentration Pathways (RCP) 4.5 and RCP 8.5. This integrated approach will enable a comprehensive analysis of how the State’s inventory of renewable energy resources will be influenced by climate change, informing a coherent and directed policy towards development, power transmission and generation infrastructure, thus providing a clear path towards state-wide energy resiliency and GHG reduction. This will enable policymakers and planners in the government, utility distribution, and the private sector, to better understand how the risk associated with the change in availability and distribution of renewable energy resources will affect transmission, distribution, and forecasting of NY’s energy supply and load demand.