January 18, 2023
Community solar is emerging as a popular way to deliver a range of economic and social benefits that go beyond clean energy. The US Department of Energy (DOE) has set a goal for America to deploy enough community solar projects to power the equivalent of five million households by 2025 and create $1 billion in energy bill savings. To reach the goal, DOE has created the Community Power Accelerator,... Read more
December 1, 2022
Until recently, publicly available information was limited for two key factors that determine the value of energy efficiency and other distributed energy resources (DERs): (1) end-use load profiles (EULPs), which quantify how and when electricity is used, and (2) savings shapes, which measure the difference between the hourly use of electricity in the baseline condition and the hourly use... Read more
October 26, 2022
Falling costs for both renewable energy and battery storage create an opportunity for China to exceed its current policy goals for decarbonizing power while cutting energy costs and increasing energy security. A new study led by researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) finds China could reach 80% carbon-free electricity by 2035 while reducing consumer costs. It could do... Read more
October 7, 2022
Costs have nearly doubled in recent years for projects with completed studies, with high costs assigned to projects that ultimately withdraw from the queue We are pleased to announce the release of a short interconnection cost analysis for the Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO) territory. This study was funded, in part, under the U.S. Department of Energy’s Interconnection... Read more
September 28, 2022
A news outlet devoted to the technology transforming state and local government recently posted an article about eProject eXpress, the new streamlined pathway within eProject Builder designed specifically for state and local governments and educational institutions. An R&D 100 Award winner, eProject Builder is a secure, web-based data management platform that enables users to preserve, access,... Read more
September 27, 2022
We are pleased to announce the release of a new report evaluating the backup power capabilities of behind-the-meter solar-plus-energy storage systems (or PVESS). The study simulates PVESS performance in providing critical-load or whole-building backup power across a wide range of geographies, building types, and power interruption conditions. The study also considers a set of 10 historical... Read more
September 20, 2022
We are pleased to release the 2022 edition of Berkeley Lab’s Utility-Scale Solar report, which presents analysis of empirical plant-level data from the U.S. fleet of ground-mounted photovoltaic (PV), PV+battery, and concentrating solar-thermal power (CSP) plants with capacities exceeding 5 MWAC. While focused on key developments in 2021, this report explores trends in deployment, technology,... Read more
August 23, 2022
Report finds significantly less competition between these resources than might be assumed, encouraging co-deployment in virtually any combination Demand flexibility is growing in importance to the grid, as more states and regions ramp up variable renewable energy generation and retire firm capacity. With energy efficiency (EE) and demand response (DR) poised to play an increasingly key role on... Read more
August 11, 2022
Please join Berkeley Lab’s Dev Millstein, along with Johannes (Hannes) Pfeifenberger, Principal at The Brattle Group, and Michael Goggin, Vice President at Grid Strategies, for a free webinar discussing the recent Berkeley Lab report “An Empirical Assessment of Regional and Interregional Transmission Congestion Value.” The webinar will be hosted by the Energy System Integration Group (ESIG).... Read more
August 10, 2022
Newly released data compilation from Berkeley Lab tracks operational and proposed plants Falling battery prices and the growth of variable renewable generation are driving a surge of interest in “hybrid” power plants that combine, for example, utility-scale wind and/or solar generating capacity with co-located batteries. While most of the current interest involves pairing photovoltaic (PV)... Read more
August 4, 2022
We are pleased to announce the release of a new Berkeley Lab technical brief titled “EV Retail Rate Design 101.” Electric vehicle (EV) adoption has increased significantly over the past several years. More than 640,000 light-duty plug-in EVs were sold in the US in 2021, which was more than twice the number sold in 2020. State regulators and policymakers are addressing barriers to EV adoption,... Read more
August 3, 2022
Climate pollutants like methane and soot don't stick around in the atmosphere as long as carbon dioxide does, but they have far greater heat-trapping potential. A new study led by researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) finds potential for China to cut emissions of these short-lived gases by up to 40% in 2030. Reducing all greenhouse gas emissions is essential to the... Read more
August 1, 2022
Extreme conditions and high-value periods disproportionately boost the value of new transmission, but are not always adequately considered in forward-looking assessments Existing transmission planning approaches run the risk of understating the economic value of new transmission infrastructure, according to new research from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. In part, this is because roughly... Read more
July 28, 2022
In the United States, the towers of new wind plants often measure greater than 90 meters in height and the rotors themselves can extend another ~60 meters up. The tremendous height of these structures means that wind speeds far above the surface can impact wind generation. The ability to accurately characterize wind speeds at these heights is critical in order to estimate potential wind energy... Read more
July 27, 2022
Compensation rules for residential rooftop solar are evolving toward a model that encourages customers to use battery storage to maximize solar self-consumption. Is this a good thing? A paper recently published by Berkeley Lab researchers in the journal iScience explores this question. The article, entitled “Private vs. public value of U.S. residential battery storage operated for solar... Read more
July 25, 2022
The clean energy transition will require utilizing large swathes of land for utility-scale solar and wind energy project sites. The impacts of large-scale deployment of solar and wind energy projects on local communities raises questions of energy justice. Some argue that the clean energy transition could burden disadvantaged communities with negative impacts from project development, while others... Read more
July 21, 2022
Berkeley Lab-led initiative helps electric companies improve grid reliability and resilience Berkeley Lab has initiated a national public-private partnership to update and upgrade the Interruption Cost Estimate (ICE) Calculator – a publicly available, online tool – which estimates the economic consequences of power interruptions. Information on the costs that customers experience when the... Read more
July 19, 2022
Berkeley Lab and The Brattle Group are pleased to announce the release of a new report, titled “Valuing Residential Energy Efficiency: Analysis for a Prototypical Southeastern Utility.” The study quantifies the amount of cost-effective residential energy efficiency (EE) that could be deployed by a prototypical summer-peaking utility in the Southeastern U.S. across scenarios representing... Read more
June 15, 2022
What will drive building investments in energy efficiency over the next 10 years? To find out, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory researchers reviewed academic literature, analyzed recent state actions on demand-side management, and interviewed and surveyed experts throughout the country. A slide-deck report, Future of Energy Efficiency in Buildings: Drivers and Market Expectations, summarizes... Read more
June 2, 2022
The United States has set an ambitious goal to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by at least 50% by 2030. Are we on track to succeed? A new study by a team of scientists and policy analysts from across the nation suggests that there are multiple pathways to achieve this goal – but big commitments will need to be made, immediately. “This study should give policy makers and other energy... Read more
June 1, 2022
There are now over 1,300 gigawatts of solar, wind, and battery capacity seeking grid interconnection, but those proposed projects face long wait times and – in many cases – very high costs to upgrade and connect to the grid system. Researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) are pleased to partner with teams from Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), the... Read more
May 31, 2022
Projecting the future cost of wind and solar generation is a challenge. While analysts employ a variety of methods to understand past wind and solar cost trends and to project future trends, learning curves tend to be the most common approach. Learning-by-doing is a broadly accepted concept for explaining relationships between technology cost reductions and cumulative output. It posits that costs... Read more
May 24, 2022
We are pleased to announce the publication of a new article in the journal Wind Energy that identifies expectations about future wind turbine and plant designs in 2035 for onshore and offshore wind. The design of wind turbines and plants have changed considerably over the past three decades, adapting to changing electric power systems and markets, technological improvements, shifting policy... Read more
April 24, 2022
Public schools spend roughly $8 billion a year on energy bills — the second largest expense after teacher salaries. Promoting energy efficiency can be a good way to save money for school districts and increase the comfort and health of teachers and students, all while reducing pollution. At a briefing in April 2022, the White House gave a shout out to a new tool that Berkeley Lab has developed... Read more
April 21, 2022
Batteries Included Top 10 Findings from Berkeley Lab Research on the Growth of Hybrid Power Plants in the United States One of the most important electric power system trends of the 2010s was the rapid deployment of wind turbines and photovoltaic arrays, but early data suggests a twist for the 2020s may be the rapid deployment of ‘hybrid’ generation resources. Hybrid power plants typically... Read more