North American electricity demand still outpacing resource growth

Electricity usage in the United States is projected to grow more than twice as fast as committed resources over the next 10 years, the North American Electric Reliability Corp. announced.

12/13/2007


Electricity usage in the United States is projected to grow more than twice as fast as committed resources over the next 10 years, the North American Electric Reliability Corp. (NERC) announced in its annual 2007 Long-Term Reliability Assessment. Unless additional resources are brought into service, some areas could fall below their target capacity margins within two or three years.
In parts of western Canada, demand is projected to outpace resource growth within about two years.
“We are at the stage where emergency situations are becoming more frequent,” said Rick Sergel, president and CEO of NERC. “Though some improvements have been made, we are requiring our aging grid to bear more and more strain, and are operating the system at or near its limits more often than ever before. As operating margins decrease, we are limiting our ability to manage unplanned events like equipment failures and extreme weather.”
Specific reliability findings detailed in the report include the following:
Wind, solar, and nuclear generation. Wind and solar are increasingly attractive generation resources, which provide benefits including fuel mix diversification and greenhouse gas emissions reductions.
“Renewable resources are an important part of North America’s energy future, but reliably integrating them into the bulk power system has its challenges,” said Sergel. “Large-scale wind and solar generation resources are often remotely located and will require new transmission lines to deliver their power to population centers. Furthermore, we must pin down how much power these renewables can consistently produce during peak demand times so that they can be factored into reliability planning.”
Proposed nuclear plants, because of their large size, also will require expansion and strengthening of the grid to provide for their reliable integration.
Capacity margins. Peak demand for electricity in the United States is forecasted to increase by almost 18% (135,000 MW) in the next 10 years—enough energy to power more than 100 million homes on an average day. Meanwhile, committed resources to meet demand, including demand response programs, are projected to increase by only roughly 8.5% (77,000 MW). Counting uncommitted resources, total resources would increase by 123,000 MW or 12.7%. California, the Rocky Mountain states, New England, Texas, the Southwest, and the Midwest could fall below their target capacity margins within two or three years if additional supply- and demand-side resources are not brought into service.
Transmission. While several transmission projects were completed in the past year, and a number of planned projects have been accelerated, projected transmission additions still lag demand growth and new generation additions in most areas. Transmission miles are projected to increase by 8.8% (14,500 circuit miles) in the United States and 4.8% (2,250 circuit miles) in Canada over the next 10 years.
While this is significantly more planned transmission than projected in last year’s assessment, financing, pricing, cost allocation, siting, permitting, and building new transmission lines remain difficult.
“NIMBY is becoming NIMS: Not in My State. Reliability of the power grid in one state affects reliability in other states too, due to the interconnected and interdependent nature of the power grid,” said Sergel.
Aging workforce. About 40% of senior electrical engineers and shift supervisors in the electricity industry are eligible to retire in 2009, according to a Hay Group study. This loss of expertise, exacerbated by the lack of new recruits entering the field, is one of the more severe challenges facing reliability today. Support for university research and development programs, additional outreach, and continual partnership between industry and government are required to address this issue.
Natural gas reliance. Florida, Texas, the Northeast, and Southern California continue to be highly dependent on natural gas as a fuel for electricity generation. This dependency could impact reliability in those regions as competition for gas supply and delivery capacity increases and Canadian imports begin to decline. Overseas markets can provide new supply, but require the construction of liquefied natural gas terminals, and increase the grid’s exposure to global economic and political risks. While a number of steps have been taken to mitigate the reliability impacts of this high gas reliance, more action is needed.
The 2007 Long-Term Reliability Assessment analyzes the adequacy of the North American bulk power system through 2016 and calls for actions to improve reliability.





No comments
The Top Plant program honors outstanding manufacturing facilities in North America. View the 2015 Top Plant.
The Product of the Year program recognizes products newly released in the manufacturing industries.
The Engineering Leaders Under 40 program identifies and gives recognition to young engineers who...
2016 Engineering Leaders Under 40; Future vision: Where is manufacturing headed?; Electrical distribution, redefined
Strategic outsourcing delivers efficiency; Sleeve bearing clearance; Causes of water hammer; Improve air quality; Maintenance safety; GAMS preview
World-class maintenance: The three keys to success - Deploy people, process and technology; 2016 Lubrication Guide; Why hydraulic systems get hot
Flexible offshore fire protection; Big Data's impact on operations; Bridging the skills gap; Identifying security risks
The digital oilfield: Utilizing Big Data can yield big savings; Virtualization a real solution; Tracking SIS performance
Getting to the bottom of subsea repairs: Older pipelines need more attention, and operators need a repair strategy; OTC preview; Offshore production difficult - and crucial
Applying network redundancy; Overcoming loop tuning challenges; PID control and networks
Driving motor efficiency; Preventing arc flash in mission critical facilities; Integrating alternative power and existing electrical systems
Package boilers; Natural gas infrared heating; Thermal treasure; Standby generation; Natural gas supports green efforts

Annual Salary Survey

Before the calendar turned, 2016 already had the makings of a pivotal year for manufacturing, and for the world.

There were the big events for the year, including the United States as Partner Country at Hannover Messe in April and the 2016 International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago in September. There's also the matter of the U.S. presidential elections in November, which promise to shape policy in manufacturing for years to come.

But the year started with global economic turmoil, as a slowdown in Chinese manufacturing triggered a worldwide stock hiccup that sent values plummeting. The continued plunge in world oil prices has resulted in a slowdown in exploration and, by extension, the manufacture of exploration equipment.

Read more: 2015 Salary Survey

Maintenance and reliability tips and best practices from the maintenance and reliability coaches at Allied Reliability Group.
The One Voice for Manufacturing blog reports on federal public policy issues impacting the manufacturing sector. One Voice is a joint effort by the National Tooling and Machining...
The Society for Maintenance and Reliability Professionals an organization devoted...
Join this ongoing discussion of machine guarding topics, including solutions assessments, regulatory compliance, gap analysis...
IMS Research, recently acquired by IHS Inc., is a leading independent supplier of market research and consultancy to the global electronics industry.
Maintenance is not optional in manufacturing. It’s a profit center, driving productivity and uptime while reducing overall repair costs.
The Lachance on CMMS blog is about current maintenance topics. Blogger Paul Lachance is president and chief technology officer for Smartware Group.
This article collection contains several articles on the vital role that compressed air plays in manufacturing plants.
This article collection contains several articles on the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) and how it is transforming manufacturing.
This article collection contains several articles on strategic maintenance and understanding all the parts of your plant.
click me