The Epoch Times, Naveen Athrappully.
On March 21, 2011, near Stadland in Germany, electricity pylons are arranged in a line leading to the Unterweser Nuclear Power Plant. Experts are working to protect the energy grid from cyberattacks. (Sean Gallup/Getty Images)
The world's electricity grid capacity is not keeping up with the rapid development of "clean" energy technologies. This could put governments' climate targets at risk
According to a report released by the International Energy Agency,
To achieve the climate goals set forth by governments around the world,
By 2040, more than 80,000,000 kilometers (49,7,000,000 miles) of electrical grids will need to be built or upgraded, the equivalent of the global grid.
According to the October 17 IEA
The clean energy transition could stall due to the lack of "adequate grids" to connect new electricity to demand.
In grid connection queues, at least 3,000 gigawatts of renewable energy projects are awaiting grid connections, 1,500 GW of which are advanced stage. This is equivalent to five times more solar PV and wind power added in 2022.
The report was noted.
This shows that grids are becoming a bottleneck in the transition to net-zero emissions.
The report said that while investments in renewable energies such as solar, wind, electric vehicles, and heat pumps are 'increasing quickly' -- almost doubling in the last five years--, those in power grids have remained static', at $300 billion per year.
In 2015, the Paris Climate Accords committed to limiting global temperature increases to 1.5 degrees Celsius over pre-industrial levels. The report said that delays in building the required power grid could make this goal 'out-of-reach'.
IEA has presented a Grid Delay Case’ scenario where the establishment of new grids or the modernization and upgrading of existing grids are not completed in a timely fashion. The power sector would emit 58 gigatonnes more CO2 in this scenario than if the national climate goals were met.
This is the equivalent of the global CO2 emissions in the power sector for the last four years. This would mean that global temperature rises would be well above 1.5 degrees Celsius with a 40% chance of exceeding 2 degrees Celsius.
The IEA report suggests enhancing the infrastructure of the power grid to achieve the transition to green energies. However, this could compromise the grid's reliability.
Many electricity utilities in the United States are based on renewable energy sources.
Have taken a stand against the strict greenhouse gas emission regulations being imposed by the Biden Administration in its effort to promote renewable energy.
A group of Independent Systems Operators and Regional Transmission Organizations issued a statement on August 8 warning the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency that its proposed emission regulations for the power sector have the potential to adversely and materially impact electric reliability'.
It said that a number of CO2 emission rules and decades-long efforts to reduce fossil fuels had resulted, in the retirement and decommissioning of coal and natural gas power plants faster than the installation and commissioning of solar and wind installations.
The group said that since wind and solar power are dependent on weather, there is a lack in reliable backup sources. This raises concerns about possible power shortages.
US Power Grid Problem
Then, you can get in touch with us.
David Blackmon, a public policy analyst specializing in energy issues, told EpochTV that the US power grid is a "huge problem" earlier this month.
He said: 'And the problem is much larger than people realize because we are currently experiencing a shortage of electric transformers to power our grid. Transformers are a vital part of all electricity projects in America, and around the world. They're very scarce. The supply of transformers can take up to four year. Inventory levels are low.
You know what?
You can't expand your grid if you do not have the necessary equipment.
The federal government does not do anything to solve this issue.
IEEE Spectrum, a magazine of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), published a report in March on EV Transition that outlined several of the costs challenges of preparing the grid to an electric economy.
The report stated that transformer costs have increased from $3,000 per unit to $4,000 each. The report said that as larger transformers might be needed to support EVs many of America's 180 million power poles would have to be upgraded, increasing the cost.
The report estimates that improvements and replacements of the grid's 8,000 units for power generation and its 600,000 miles of AC transmission line, as well as the 70,000 substations needed to support renewable energy and battery storage will cost more than $2 trillion by 2035.
The agency states that upgrading grid infrastructure can be a lengthy process. It can take up to 15 years for new grid infrastructure to be planned, permitted, and completed.
Renewable energy projects, on the other hand, can be completed within a year to five. The report also stated that grid investment would have to double from its current level to $600 billion annually by 2030.
Moreover, although the IEA's report portrays renewable energy as a climate-friendly action, these energy projects can present serious pollution risks.
There are more than 500 millions people in the world today.
In the United States alone, it is expected that tens or even hundreds of millions more solar panels will be installed in the next few years. In the meantime, the industry has not been fully recycled, raising questions about how to dispose of solar panels safely.
Solar panels can contain toxic chemicals such as cadmium, telluride, and lead. The silicon tetrachloride chemical, which is a by-product of the solar panel industry, can also cause serious irritations and burns on the skin and eye.
Solar panel waste thrown in landfills poses a risk to the long-term health of the environment, as toxic metals and minerals can seep into the soil.