Feb 2 2022

Transmission Costs of Future Green Replacement of Natural Gas as a Source of Electricity

Natural Gas Green?  Piedmont says NO, California says NO

Europe says YES –

European Union Commission Classifies Natural Gas as Green Power, while the CA Grid Estimates $30.5 billion for New Electric Transmission Lines to End Use of Natural Gas  –

In 2020 (the latest data year), California’s in-state created electricity was generated by coal (.17%), by natural gas (48.35%), by oil (.02%), by nuclear (8.53%), by large hydro (9.40%). California also gets electricity from other states.  California’s imported (from out of state) electricity was powered by coal (8.76%), by natural gas (10.68%), by nuclear (11:21%), by large hydro (18.78%), and 17.% was generated by “unspecified ” or unnamed sources.

California’s intended switch from natural gas and other fuels to clean power will require $30.5 billion for electric transmission lines and substations by 2040 in preparation for hooking up solar, wind and geothermal plants, according to a report by the state’s grid operator, California Independent System Operator (CAISO).  New connections would be needed to more than 2 gigawatts of new, onshore wind power in California, 12 gigawatts of wind turbines in other western states that could supply California, 53 gigawatts of large-scale solar plants, and 37 gigawatts of batteries plugged into the grid by 2040.  $8.1 billion of the projected budget would be required just to connect 10 gigawatts of future coastline offshore wind turbines.

The report shows the challenge California faces to end greenhouse gas electricity grid emissions by 2045.  The most recent data is for 2020 when renewables contributed a third to California’s electricity power, including contributions from neighboring states.

Read CA power generation sources here

Read January 31, 2022 Transmission Outlook here.

One Response to “Transmission Costs of Future Green Replacement of Natural Gas as a Source of Electricity”

  1. Reading this highly reputable background data on where our electricity comes from casts further doubt on the wisdom of mandatory electrification. Most recognize that electricity is no greener than the source of that electricity, and for California, that means non-renewable sources, primarily natural gas. Too bad this hadn’t been analyzed when Piedmont was considering its electrification ordinances.

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