Clean Power & Resiliency Expert Q&A

About this “Ask Me Anything” Session

Preparing for a more resilient future is imperative for countries as the impacts of climate change, including stronger weather events and natural disasters, and other unforeseen events threaten cities and communities across the globe. Clean power technologies and infrastructure are essential solutions for policymakers, planners, system operators and others working to build a more resilient power system.

Are you working on or considering these issues? Would you like to connect with peers and experts pioneering this important work? If so, you should participate in our “Ask Me Anything” session on clean power and resiliency.

When Will the Session Start?

This session starts on 1st June. On 1st June, you can start posting your questions about clean power and resiliency in this thread (see the reply button at the bottom right of this post) and our experts will post answers.

How Do I Participate in this Session?

Before you post a question, make sure you’ve create your account with the Clean Power Hub Community. After you create an account, you can post any questions you have about clean power and resiliency in this thread.

Who Will Answer the Questions?

We have three resiliency and clean power experts standing by to answer your questions!

  • Dr. Jennifer Leisch with Two Degrees Group
  • Ilya Chernyakhovskiy with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory
  • Mohit Chandra Joshi with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory

What Questions Can I Ask?

We will do our best to answer any relevant questions you post about clean power and resiliency. Questions can relate to how clean power can support and strengthen power system resiliency, the resiliency of clean power technologies, or how to plan for greater resilience with clean power.

Can I Ask Questions Anonymously?

We highly encourage you to post questions with your name and organization to help build better relationships with your peers and experts, but you can post questions anonymously if your question is sensitive for any reason. You can post questions anonymously after you create your Clean Power Hub account by following these directions.

Who Should I Contact If I Have Questions?
Please email hello@propelcleanenergy.com with any questions about this session.

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What are best practices to consider power system resilience when making new investments in the power sector? At ERC, we currently don’t have good indicators of resilience that we can use when making investment decisions.

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Clean power technologies like wind and solar are intermittent and don’t seem like they would bring resilience to a power system. Can we support clean power at the same time that we guarantee resilience in the power system? What are some success stories here?

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What’s the difference between power system resilience versus other topics like power system reliability and security?

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Thanks for your question. There are several resources available that provide guidance about resilience considerations in power sector planning. A good place to start is this report titled Power Sector Resilience Planning Guidebook: A Self-Guided Reference for Practitioners. The report includes guidance for performing vulnerability and risk assessments, identifying and prioritizing resilience solutions, and developing a resilience planning process.

It is true that wind and solar power present new challenges for the power system. These challenges are primarily related to managing variability and uncertainty through increased power system flexibility, operational improvements, forecasting, and other known solutions. However, more clean energy does not necessarily make a power system less resilient, and in some cases, RE can help the power system during extreme events. The modular nature of wind turbines and solar plants enable greater geographic diversification of energy supplies compared conventional power plants, and increased diversification reduced the vulnerability of the energy supply to large disruptions. Distributed RE can also be used in microgrids that are capable of islanding, i.e., disconnecting from the larger grid during an outage to provide energy to critical local loads like hospitals.

Thanks for the question. As mentioned by Ilya, RE can also support resilience as it can be distributed and has no dependence on the complex fuel supply chain across the world. You can find more information through following links:

https://www.ren21.net/renewable-energy-resilient/

Hope this helps.

Mohit

Thanks for the great question. There is some degree of overlap between reliability and resilience. A reliable system need not be resilient but a resilient system need to be reliable. Also, reliability is more focused towards credible high probability events whereas resilience looks into low probability high impact events. Some resources for quick read
https://www.nrel.gov/docs/fy19osti/74673.pdf (text box on page 1)
https://insidelines.pjm.com/reliability-and-resilience-different-concepts-common-goals/

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How do we design for a resilient power system? Are there any case studies on policies/initiatives to design & develop resilient power systems?

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Welcome to the discussion, Prateek. Glad you are here.

Hi Prateek! Great question. Ilya referenced a few resources above that I find particularly helpful, such as the Resilient Energy Platform. Typically, we want to plan for resilience, build a resilient system, and manage ongoing risk to the system. During the planning process, a risk assessment is performed on both the current and future system, and these risks addressed through a portfolio of interventions that will be uniquely suited to the context. These interventions may be “soft”, such as policies, regulations, operational changes, or human resources requirements, or may include infrastructure hardening and related steel-in-the-ground investments. We need to have achievable and realistic targets for how a resilient power system is defined, and what level of risk is acceptable given the context.

A useful case study is from the Lao PDR, where stakeholders performed a risk assessment and developed a prioritized set of resilience measures to safeguard the power system:

(I may be a bit biased as one of the authors, but would be happy to answer any specific questions about it!)

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I will add one more answer to this thread! Any asset poses potential risk to the system, and should be carefully evaluated based on current and future conditions. Future investments should take these risks into account, and seek to address them through a portfolio of interventions meant to safeguard the system during both chronic and acute events. Wind, solar, hydro, and demand side energy efficiency can offer opportunities to couple climate change mitigation and resilience. A great reference on the resilience co-benefits of clean energy options is “Bridging Climate Change Resilience and Mitigation in the Electricity Sector Through Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency”.

Thanks for inviting me to this platform, Matt.

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I saw a question by Prateek on case-studies on resilience. My colleagues had conducted a research on 14 case studies across India in the solar for health, education and livelihoods space, where climate resilience was not taken into consideration in the project planning and implementation. It also has a checklist for things to keep in mind while building resilient solar installations. Hope this is helpful: Powering Development in Climate Vulnerable Areas: The Role of Decentralized Solar Solutions in India | World Resources Institute

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Welcome, Lanvin! Glad you’re here.

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