This study looks at an alternative approach to meeting all system services provision via a ‘Zero-Carbon Model’. We have analysed the societal benefits – in terms of CO2 emissions reduction, operational cost savings and reduced renewable curtailment – of procuring all system services from zero-carbon technologies, compared with an alternative scenario where fossil fuels continue to be the predominant provider.
Key findings – what have we learned?
- Procuring system services from zero-carbon providers could reduce all-island power sector emissions by almost 2 million tonnes of CO2 per year by 2030. This is equivalent to one third of total 2030 power sector emissions that could be avoided by transitioning to a Zero-Carbon Model.
- There are significant operational cost savings associated with sourcing all system services from zero-carbon sources, with up to €90m per year of savings by 2021, increasing to €117m per year by 2030, primarily from avoided fuel and carbon costs. We project an annual operational cost saving of €57m per year by 2030 if reserve requirements alone are met by zero-carbon technologies
- There is a significant reduction in renewable curtailment if system operational constraints are met using zero-carbon service providers. In 2030, our analysis suggests a greater than 50% reduction in renewable curtailment from 8.1% to 4.0%. This reduction in the curtailment of zero-marginal cost renewables results in lower electricity generation costs as it displaces more expensive, typically fossil-fuelled, generators in the production of electricity.
Watch Mark Turner present the findings of this study at the IWEA Autumn Conference 2019
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