The U.S. electricity network has many owners and thus they face a similar planning problem as we do in Europe, in order to lower needed investment costs and also to integrate renewables [1]. In Europe, the problem spans across all not-yet-connected nations, in the U.S. it is the state level which borders off parts of the grid. The grid planning problem has engineering dimensions (which connections to build/strengthen inside and between existing grids to cope best with expected developments) and economic dimensions (long-term investment questions intersect with plans to design new markets and to maybe even merge them to some degree, e.g. a european-wide market level), but the elephant in the room seems to be the ability to reach any consensus between stakeholders:

The technology, the engineering skill and even the money are all available, experts say, but the ability to reach agreement on such a grid is not.

Will Obama slash the Gordian Knot at some point? Will the E.U. do it? Who is more able to wield that sword and who is better able to find a compromise that is atually good and will work? And will China, in the meantime, run away with their ability to simply push through plans in a centralised manner? And will that be catastrophic or actually work well?


22 Jul 2013 - 0:56
# lastedited 24 Jul 2013
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