Market Overview

Wires Applauds Major Interregional Transmission Study By An NREL-Led Group

Share:

Wires Applauds Major Interregional Transmission Study By An NREL-Led Group

PR Newswire

WASHINGTON, July 26, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Today the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and several collaborators issued a much–anticipated analysis of the economic and operational benefits of greater integration of the interstate electric transmission grid across the current "seam" between the Eastern and Western North American power grids.  The results of the NREL Seam Study, released today at TransGrid-X 2030 Symposium at Iowa State University, indicate that major expansion of the grid will produce consumer benefits including lower-cost, more reliable, and cleaner electricity that more than triple the probable costs. 

WIRES logo (PRNewsfoto/WIRES)

The report concluded that each of the transmission expansion scenarios offered benefit-to-cost ratios of $2.48, $3.30, and $2.52 for each $1.00 invested, respectively.  These are conservative estimates based only on the first 15 years of operating the new transmission lines; if fully built, the bi-directional high-voltage overlay lines as presented by the NREL Seam Study would represent a trillion-dollar economic event. 

WIRES Counsel & Executive Director and former Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Chair Jim Hoecker keynoted the Symposium.  Hoecker stated, "This work lends enormous credibility to the idea of 'big transmission' even at a time when new technologies and security concerns have policy makers looking to efficient distributed energy solutions as well."  Noting in his prepared remarks that such ambitious expansion of our nation's transmission infrastructure faces substantial financial, regulatory, and legal barriers to its realization, Hoecker added, "This study should persuade both pro-market and environmentally motivated policy makers to work to overcome those barriers in light of the tremendous benefits for consumers, the North American economy, and national security that major grid investment will produce over the coming decades.  Regardless of how interregional projects are configured ultimately, NREL has conceptualized a practical approach to supporting a more heavily electrified economy."

Read the highlights of a WIRES report on the economic benefits of transmission expansion.

Read more about the TransGrid-X 2030 Symposium.

About WIRES

WIRES is an international non-profit trade association of investor-, publicly-, and cooperatively owned transmission providers, transmission customers, regional grid managers, and equipment and service companies.  WIRES promotes investment in electric transmission and progressive state and federal policies that advance energy markets, economic efficiency, and consumer and environmental benefits through development of electric power infrastructure.  For more information, visit www.wiresgroup.com.

Cision View original content with multimedia:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/wires-applauds-major-interregional-transmission-study-by-an-nrel-led-group-300686905.html

SOURCE WIRES

View Comments and Join the Discussion!