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Short takes. . .


April 25, 2013

By Jeannine Anderson
Editor
With more renewable energy coming onto the U.S. grid, unpleasant things are bound to happen, writes Davis Swan, president of consulting firm Debarel Systems Ltd., in an article in Energybiz magazine. A complex balance of baseload and peaking power plants "has been in place for decades and has resulted in a very reliable electricity supply," Swan said, but over the last 10 years, that balance "has been disrupted by the introduction of renewable resources such as solar and wind," which often are given priority access to the grid. "Declining reserve capacity and uncertainty regarding the economics of new thermal plants will destabilize the electric grid," he wrote. "Rolling blackouts and/or regional grid failures will occur on a more frequent basis. These are the unavoidable consequences of continued aggressive development of renewable generation."

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