31 Jan '13, 4pm

Can Obama Do for the Grid What Eisenhower Did for Highways?

The contiguous lower 48 states span three time zones, and usually have two to three frontal weather systems moving across them. Both wind and solar availability are affected by the moving systems; averaging across the United States makes the fractional variability much smaller. To achieve this we need a far more capable distribution grid, turning the 48 states (and likely much of Canada and northern Mexico) into a single unified power pool, capable of moving large amounts of power. Studies demonstrate this is practical today, and would result in economies even without renewable energy, because it would reduce the number of power plants which must be built/maintained, and creates a bidding pool far more resistant to price manipulation. It strongly improves the case for wind and solar if it can ship power from the areas of strong resource to markets far away. [footnote 2 ] I...

Full article: http://dotearth.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/01/31/can-obama-do...

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