Tuesday, August 2, 2016

USA, California: Questions Remain for Expanding Energy Imbalance Market

Will an expanded power grid help California fight climate change? (Sac Bee)

In three years, California’s largest utilities could be slashing their use of fossil fuels by swapping homegrown solar energy for Rocky Mountain wind power in a sprawling Western electricity grid.

Or a newly expanded grid could provide a profitable market to revive out-of-state coal plants that would otherwise face a harder time complying with California’s aggressive greenhouse-gas-reduction efforts.

Those contrasting scenarios are driving debate as the state’s energy and air-quality regulators finish studies on a proposal to merge the grid for California’s biggest power companies – Pacific Gas and Electric Co., San Diego Gas and Electric, and Southern California Edison – with another privately run entity that serves 1.8 million customers across the West. The combined grid would serve about 32 million customers.

There will be a GRC Fieldtrip to the headquarters of CAISO from the GRC Annual Meeting & GEA Geothermal Energy Expo, October 23-26, Sacramento, California.

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