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How renewables are helping the struggling Eskom utility in South Africa to keep the lights on


On 2 April, a day with a reportedly elevated risk of load shedding, Eskom was able to provide 29.8GW of supply during the evening peak. But demand peaked at just under 31GW at around 6pm. The difference of more than 1GW was met using wind and concentrated solar power from IPPs.

Eskom used pumped water schemes and its hydro plants (total of 1.7GW), open cycle gas turbines (546MW) and demand-side management through its so-called “virtual power station” (409 MW) to achieve its nearly 30GW. Tellingly, it did not (have to) rely on either of the (very pricey) Avon or Dedisa gas peaking plants.

Wind comprised the bulk of the additional supply provided by the IPPs during the peak, with only a residual amount — easily less than 200MW — from concentrated solar.

Given the current dire performance from Eskom’s coal fleet, without renewable energy from the IPPs (at around 2GW), we would be in a near-perpetual state of stage-two load shedding.... Show more...
 
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♲ nerdpol2018@despora.de:
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US Citizens want more clean energy. Here's what they're actually willing to do to get it


Americans (US Citizens I assume) have long supported the idea of clean power. The question has always been how much effort they're willing to expend to make a green energy future a reality.

A new survey from global auditing and consulting firm Deloitte suggests the gap between environmental concern and consumer action may be shrinking. The pillars helping to bridge the divide include falling prices for solar power, higher awareness of clean energy options, growing concern about climate change and the inclinations of millennials.

"In addition to expressing broad support for renewables, residential consumers are generally striving to do more to become greener at a personal level," the report authors wrote.

In this year's Deloitte Resources Study, 68 percent of electric power buyers said they are very concerned about climate change and their carbon footprint. That's the highest percentage ever recorded in the study, topping the previous record of 65 percent in 2016.... Show more...
 
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Your future home might be powered by car batteries



When Damien Maguire moved to the countryside outside Dublin, he struggled to keep the lights on at home because of the town’s constant power outages. He found a solution inside his electric cars: their batteries.

A tinkerer who posts videos of his hand-built vehicles on Youtube, Maguire devised a wiring system that lets him suck power out of them when they’re parked in the garage. Now that the house and cars are connected, he can also use the batteries to store energy from his backyard solar panels, another power source that’s not totally reliable given Ireland’s weather.

“You have the light-bulb moment,” said the 41-year-old electrical engineer. “There’s a big battery in the car, so how about I use that?”

An even bigger light-bulb moment is happening for utilities and automakers, who want to use the batteries inside electric cars as storage for the entire public power grid. The idea, known as “vehicle-to-grid,” is to someday have m... Show more...
 
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