News & Events

Trust but Verify: Report Supports Advanced Practices for Assessing Demand Flexibility Performance

8/5/2020

When utilities and regional grid operators plan electricity systems, they estimate the system value of various types of resources. Performance assessments verify whether the expected grid services are actually provided.

New data tool from Berkeley Lab tracks proposed projects in interconnection queues

8/4/2020

new data visualization from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory synthesizes data from generation interconnection queues to illustrate trends in proposed power plants across time and regions. The data compilation demonstrates considerable developer interest in solar, wind, natural gas, and standalone storage plants, as well as growing interest in so-called “hybrid” plants that combine multiple generation types and/or storage at the point of interconnection.

Study Explores Trends in the Cost of Wind Energy across Six Countries

8/3/2020

Shows that historical drivers of levelized costs are multifaceted, go well beyond capital costs

We are pleased to announce the publication of a new article in the journal Applied Energy focused on historical trends in the cost and value of land-based wind energy.

Berkeley Lab report identifies interactions between energy efficiency and demand response

7/22/2020

We are pleased to announce the release of a new report from Berkeley Lab identifying energy efficiency (EE) and demand response (DR) attributes, utility system conditions, and technological factors that are likely to drive interactions between EE and DR.

Interest in Hybrid and Co-Located Power Plants Continues to Grow

7/20/2020

New data compilation from Berkeley Lab tracks existing and proposed projects

As battery prices fall and wind and solar generation rises, power plant developers are increasingly combining wind and solar projects with on-site batteries, creating “hybrid” power plants. But hybrid or co-located plants have been part of the U.S. electricity mix for decades, with widely ranging configurations that extend beyond pairing a generator with a battery.

New research assesses fleet-wide performance of utility-scale PV in the United States, and how it has changed with age

7/15/2020

Berkeley Lab is pleased to announce a new article recently published in the Journal of Renewable and Sustainable Energy, titled “System-Level Performance and Degradation of 21 GWDC of Utility-Scale PV Plants in the United States.” This study finds that first-year performance generally lives up to ex ante expectations, while the rate of performance decline over time depends on factors such as plant vinta

New study explores the hidden value of large-rotor, tall-tower wind turbines

7/6/2020

Supersized wind turbines could deliver $4-5/MWh more in grid benefits than today’s turbine technology, in addition to any direct-cost advantages

Study supports need to expand the design space to focus not only on direct-cost minimization, but also on the underlying value of wind to the electricity system

New study finds solar PV permitting timelines are getting shorter, but customers still face significant uncertainty

6/9/2020

Local permitting timelines for rooftop solar systems are getting shorter but remain highly variable, according to a new Berkeley Lab study published in the journal Energy Policy. Most PV permitting processes take fewer than 2 months from permit application to a passed inspection, but some customers face substantially longer timelines. The differences in permitting authority experience and policies explain some of this variation.

 

 

New study finds increase in expected useful life and decrease in operating expenses over time for utility-scale PV

6/2/2020

Solar professionals report that the assumed useful life of PV projects now exceeds 30 years in most cases, with OpEx dropping by 50% over the last decade.

Benefits of Utility Efficiency Programs Go Beyond Direct Energy Impacts

5/27/2020

Avoided energy and capacity costs are the primary yardstick utilities use to determine which energy efficiency programs are cost-effective for their customers. But sometimes "non-energy impacts" — not commonly recognized as directly associated with energy generation, transmission and distribution — represent substantial benefits, such as improving comfort, air quality and public health.

Attend four AWEA expert sessions featuring Berkeley Lab's wind energy research

5/19/2020

Although AWEA CLEANPOWER has been cancelled this year, much of the education content will be presented via webinars. Four Berkeley Lab Electricity Markets & Policy experts will be presenting sessions on topics spanning the wind industry in the coming weeks.

New Research Evaluates How US Wind Plant Performance Changes with Age

5/14/2020

Wind plant performance declines due to plant age in the United States can be partially managed and is influenced by policy, according to a recent study from the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab).

Energy Efficiency Continues to Be Cheaper Than Natural Gas

5/13/2020

A new study by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) estimates that utility efficiency programs for natural gas achieved energy savings at an average cost to program administrators of 40 cents per therm from 2012 to 2017.

Two New Reports Highlight Actions State and Local Governments Can Take to Increase Electricity System Flexibility

4/30/2020

Growth in peak demand, higher levels of wind and solar generation, and transportation electrification are raising new challenges for electricity systems. Buildings are a source of demand flexibility that can help meet these challenges cost-effectively.

Hybrid power plants are growing rapidly: are they a good idea?

3/13/2020

New article explores the advantages, disadvantages, and development trends of generator-plus-battery power plants

As battery prices continue to fall and the penetration of variable wind and solar generation rises, power plant developers are increasingly combining wind and solar projects with on-site batteries, creating “hybrid” power plants.

New Berkeley Lab report on solar-adopter income trends

3/4/2020

A new report by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory highlights income trends among residential rooftop solar adopters.

Latest Grid Data Book Reveals Key Trends in Renewable Integration

3/2/2020

Biennial Data Compilation Identifies Changes in Markets and Power System Operations as Renewables Are Integrated onto the Grid

The share of variable renewable energy (VRE)—mainly solar and wind—generation on U.S. regional power systems more than doubled on average from 2012 to 2018, according to the newly released 2018 Renewable Energy Grid Integration Data Book.

Webinar announcement: Explore the LCOE and market value benefits of wind turbines with larger rotors and taller towers

2/11/2020

At 1:00 PM EST on Wednesday, March 4, please join researchers from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) for a free, one-hour webinar that will provide a wide-ranging assessment of the costs and benefits of continued wind turbine scaling in the United States.

Berkeley Lab’s “Utility-Scale Solar” report sees continued growth and falling costs for big solar

12/18/2019

We are pleased to release the 2019 edition of Berkeley Lab’s Utility-Scale Solar report, which presents analysis of empirical project-level data from the U.S. fleet of ground-mounted photovoltaic (PV) and concentrating solar-thermal power (CSP) projects with capacities exceeding 5 MWAC.

New Study Highlights Cost Performance of Electricity Efficiency for Publicly Owned Utilities

12/5/2019

A new study by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory finds that energy efficiency programs for customers of publicly owned utilities saved electricity at an average cost of 2.4 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh) from 2012 to 2017. 

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