Smart Grid In California Powered 95% By Renewables, Avoiding KAOS

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May 3, 2021

On April 24th, for a very brief period, California’s renewable energy sources, (solar, wind, geothermal, biomass and hydropower) produced enough electricity to cover 95% of the State’s energy needs, reducing the State’s dependency on fossil-fuels and carbon emissions. This permitted California’s grid operators to sell their excess electricity (fossil fuels) to other Utilities.

Electronic Symphony

Online communications and electrical resource management have developed to the point now where Utilities can share resources if they are part of a larger energy network, like the Western Energy Imbalance Market. Our larger local Utilities participate – Puget Sound Energy (2016), Seattle City Light (2020), and in 2022, Tacoma Power and it’s estimated by 2023 that 83% of the Western US grid will be part of the Market. The benefit to each Utility and ratepayer is lowered energy costs. Utilities have saved an estimated $101 million in just the first quarter of 2021. Seattle City Light saved $2.6 million and PSE saved $4.31 million.

Our grid is evolving. It’s transitioning from fossil-fuels to renewables + energy storage and from a Centralized to a Decentralized model. The more interconnected our systems become, the more effective we all become in contributing to the fight against the Climate Crisis with our decisions about producing our own clean renewable energy like solar and driving electric.

Seeing California hit 94% of it’s electrical demand via renewable energy is exciting. Washington State is very capable of attaining similar if not higher levels of contributions to our electrical grid from renewable energy because of our abundant hydropower resources as shown in Seattle City Light’s graphic about their energy mix.

As these large electrical grids become more interconnected, each renewable energy system reduces the need to burn fossil fuels locally or remotely.

Give us a call at 206-706-1931 or fill out a contact form to find out how you can become part of the solution for the Climate Crisis by going solar at your home or business.

Jeremy Smithson

About The Author - Jeremy Smithson

Started Puget Sound Solar in 2001 with 30 years of construction contracting experience, and a desire to turn Seattle on to solar energy. Achieving NABCEP certification in 2004, Jeremy believes that our customers often follow a path similar to the one he took, starting out with solar daydreaming, then progressing to education on the subject, and eventually leading to action. In addition to leading the company he also does some teaching and speaking engagements about various aspects of solar energy, and experiments relentlessly with various solar, energy efficiency, and electric vehicle projects.

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