Super-Grids and Concentrated Solar Power: A Scenario Analysis with the WITCH Model

52 Pages Posted: 17 Nov 2011

See all articles by Emanuele Massetti

Emanuele Massetti

Georgia Institute of Technology; CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute); CMCC - Euro Mediterranean Centre for Climate Change

Elena Claire Ricci

CMCC - Centro Euro-Mediterraneo sui Cambiamenti Climatici

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Date Written: June 1, 2011

Abstract

We extend the WITCH model to consider the possibility to produce and trade electricity generated by large scale concentrated solar power plants in highly productive areas that are connected to the demand centres through High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) cables. We find that it becomes optimal to produce with this source only from 2040 and trade from 2050. In the second half of the century, CSP electricity shares become very significant especially when penetration limits are imposed on nuclear power and on carbon capture and storage operations (CCS). Climate policy costs can be reduced by large percentages, up to 66% with respect to corresponding scenarios without the CSP-powered Super-Grid option and with limits on nuclear power and CCS. We also show that MENA countries have the incentive to form a cartel to sell electricity to Europe at a price higher than the marginal cost. Therefore we advocate the institution of an international agency with the role to regulate a hypothetic Mediterranean electricity market.

Keywords: climate policy, integrated assessment, renewable energy, concentrated solar power, power grid, electricity trade

JEL Classification: Q2, Q43, Q54

Suggested Citation

Massetti, Emanuele and Ricci, Elena Claire, Super-Grids and Concentrated Solar Power: A Scenario Analysis with the WITCH Model (June 1, 2011). CMCC Research Paper No. 108. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1960483 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1960483

Emanuele Massetti (Contact Author)

Georgia Institute of Technology ( email )

685 Cherry St.
Atlanta, GA 30332-0345
United States

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

CMCC - Euro Mediterranean Centre for Climate Change

via Augusto Imperatore, 16
Lecce, I-73100
Italy

Elena Claire Ricci

CMCC - Centro Euro-Mediterraneo sui Cambiamenti Climatici ( email )

via Augusto Imperatore, 16
Lecce, I-73100
Italy

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