Post tagged with "grid stability"

Our Thinking

The electricity grid has enough capacity today — but don’t stop thinking about tomorrow

  • By Aaron Tinjum
  • July 7, 2014

Summer peak demand can put tremendous strain on the electricity grid. But, according to a recent report, the U.S. and Canada are prepared to meet this summer’s demand.

In June, the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) found that both the U.S. and Canada have sufficient reserve margins — a measure of available generating capacity over and above the capacity needed to meet normal peak demand — to reliably serve the country’s electric demand this summer.

In aggregate, U.S. electric demand is expected to peak at about 853,000 MW, which is about the same as last summer. In total, about one million megawatts of capacity exists to meet the expected demand. Below is a map (courtesy of the Energy Information Administration) with reserve margin estimates and targets for summer 2014; in all regions, the estimated reserve margins for summer 2014 are equal to or greater than the target levels.

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This is what Tesla owners are doing while you sleep

  • By Barry Fischer and Ben Harack
  • July 2, 2014

By day…electric vehicles are taking the world by storm: their sales are doubling every year, their fuel efficiency is off the charts, and some of them can even accelerate from 0-60 mph about as fast as you can say Elon Musk.

By nightthe electric vehicle (EV) community continues to make waves. While you are in bed dreaming about how some day you too might own an electric car, many EV owners are doing something dramatic; something unusual; something that is reshaping the energy landscape.

They are using gobs of electricity.

Average power consumption climbs to 4x above typical

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Our Thinking

The Politics of Power: 3 hot-button energy issues fueling ‘House of Cards’, Season Two

  • By Aaron Tinjum and Barry Fischer
  • February 25, 2014

SPOILER ALERT: If you haven’t finished watching (or, perhaps “binging”) Season Two of “House of Cards,” and wish to avoid finding out what happens in certain episodes, you may want to hold off on reading this.

Netflix’s “House of Cards” has captivated the nation. Viewers have been brought to the edge of their seats as Frank Underwood — a fictitious national politician from South Carolina — ruthlessly deals and plots his way to the upper echelons of American power.

In Season Two, a different kind of power also takes center stage — that of the U.S. electric grid. In the midst of high-stakes political drama, the show draws attention to a number of hot-button energy issues, including grid stability, utility customer satisfaction, and federal regulation. While “House of Cards” is a fictional program, all these issues do have a basis in reality and are important components of our energy landscape. Here are a few of those issues, along with some explanations that will make you a savvier viewer of the show…

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