Variable Renewable Energy Grid Integration Studies: A Guidebook

Variable Renewable Energy Grid Integration Studies: A Guidebook for Practitioners

Introduction to Variable Renewable Energy

Countries around the world are establishing ambitious goals to scale up the contribution of renewable energy toward meeting national energy demand. Due to the variability and uncertainty of some renewable energy resources, such as wind and solar, reaching high penetrations of these resources on the grid requires an evolution in power system planning and operations. To plan for this evolution, power system stakeholders can undertake a grid integration study. A grid integration study is a comprehensive examination of the challenges and potential solutions associated with integrating significant amounts of variable renewable energy (VRE) generation into the power grid.

The purpose of this guidebook is to introduce power system policymakers, regulators, operators, and supporting organizations to renewable energy grid integration studies.

How to Use This Guidebook

This guidebook provides a brief but comprehensive summary of the strategies, best practices, and terminology associated with conducting a high-quality grid integration study. Teams that are in the initial stages of designing a grid integration study can use this guidebook to understand the key steps, modeling tools, data collection activities, and considerations that will enable a successful effort. Although this guidance is broadly applicable to most power systems, it emphasizes considerations relevant to developing economies, drawing on experiences from efforts by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) to support analyses with its partner countries.

As the share of wind and solar in the global energy supply continues to rise, a growing body of research and experience is emerging related to the efficient integration of these VRE resources into power systems. Recognizing both the wealth of existing resources and the difficulty in providing general guidance on analyses that are inherently system specific, this guidebook does not detail all methodological steps and issues related to each topic. Instead, each section includes a toolkit with links to supplemental materials that provide more in-depth information and guidance. Each section also includes recommendations for topic-specific actions for the team leading a grid integration study. Finally, wherever possible, each section includes specific examples from actual grid integration studies.

The guidebook is organized as follows:

Variable Renewable Energy Grid Integration Studies:
Explore the Guidebook  Greening the Grid

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