Renewable Energy Integration

Achieving aggressive renewable energy targets, like California’s plan for 50% of electricity used in the state to be supplied by renewable energy by 2030, will require major changes in technology, infrastructure, and electricity market functioning. Important focus areas include: 1) expansion of transmission infrastructure to carry renewable energy from resource-rich areas to population centers, 2) dynamic pricing of electricity to end users so they adjust their consumption in response to real-time availability of wind and sun, and 3) proper incentives (including dynamic pricing) to support the integration of short- and long-term electricity storage into the system. Research conducted under this platform includes randomized controlled trials of consumer behavioral response to dynamic pricing, modeling of the competitiveness effects of transmission expansions, and use of the web-based Energy Market Game to explore the effectiveness of different market models (for example, capacity markets vs. forward contracting) in ensuring resource adequacy in high-renewables scenarios.