Transmission, Distribution, and Storage: Grid Integration, Ch. 20
Legal Pathways to Deep Decarbonization in the United States, 2019
20 Pages Posted: 16 Oct 2019
Date Written: October 6, 2019
This chapter discusses the important role of the electric transmission and distribution grid in meeting deep decarbonization goals. The U.S. Deep Decarbonization Pathways Project reports state that meeting the 2050 target of reducing U.S. greenhouse gas emissions 80% below 1990 levels will require almost “fully decarbonizing” U.S. electricity resources and shifting a large share of transportation-related energy needs from petroleum resources to electricity resources. Accomplishing this goal will require a doubling of U.S. electricity generation as well as a significant expansion of the U.S. electric transmission and distribution grid, particularly since onshore renewable energy resources are dispersed widely throughout the country and are often located far from population centers. The reports conclude that the actual monetary cost to build the necessary transmission and distribution infrastructure is modest and will not significantly impact the cost of electricity resources for consumers. But there are legal, political, and socioeconomic barriers to building large amounts of new, interstate transmission infrastructure. These barriers and potential solutions to them are the focus of the chapter.
Keywords: electric transmission lines, distributed energy, deep decarbonization, energy storage, microgrids
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