Boosting the Value of Wind and Solar in Wholesale Power Markets

Recorded On: 05/26/2020

As wind and solar deployment grows, wholesale power prices will by necessity adjust to the new realities of weather- and location- dependent, low marginal-cost generation. Changes in the temporal and geographic patterns of prices are expected. Importantly, these pricing changes hold implications for the merchant ‘market value’ of wind and solar in wholesale energy and capacity markets, with a general expectation that that value will decline as renewable penetrations increase.

Given the potential for grid-system ‘value deflation’ as variable renewable energy increases, this talk will summarize research by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory that is assessing ways of enhancing the wholesale market value of wind and solar.

Options that will be quantitatively evaluated include: hybridization of wind and solar with storage, larger rotors and taller towers for wind, higher inverter-loading ratios for photovoltaics as well as optimized orientation and tracking, participation in ancillary services markets, and power plant siting in locations with relatively higher wholesale prices. The analysis will be based on an assessment of the potential value of these options in existing wholesale markets, and will demonstrate practical means of boosting grid-system value as well as the relative magnitude of the value enhancement that might be possible with each technique.

Ryan Wiser

Senior Scientist, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

Dr. Ryan Wiser is a Senior Scientist in and Group Leader of the Electricity Markets and Policy Group at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. He leads a research program focused on renewable electricity systems, including on the costs, benefits, impacts and market potential of renewable electricity sources; on electric grid operations and infrastructure impacts; on public acceptance and deployment barriers; and on the planning, design, and evaluation of renewable energy programs. Ryan has been a lead author for two reports by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, and he has offered invited testimony to the U.S. Senate. He is a founding member of the academic advisory board for the University of San Francisco's Master of Science in Energy Systems Management; serves on the board of directors for the Clean Energy States Alliance; serves as a United States representative on a multi-country IEA Wind collaboration on the cost of wind energy; and is an advisor to the Energy Foundation's China program. He holds a B.S. in Civil Engineering from Stanford University and an M.S. and Ph.D. in Energy and Resources from the University of California, Berkeley.

Andrew Mills (Moderator)

Research Scientist in the Electricity Markets and Policy Group at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

Andrew Mills is a Research Scientist in the Electricity Markets and Policy Group at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.  Andrew conducts research on the integration of variable generation into the electric power system, evaluating the costs, benefits, and institutional needs of renewable energy transmission and other supporting infrastructure.    Andrew has a Ph.D. in Energy and Resources from UC Berkeley and a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the Illinois Institute of Technology.

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05/26/2020 at 2:00 PM (EDT)   |  30 minutes
05/26/2020 at 2:00 PM (EDT)   |  30 minutes
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