Results 1 - 10 of 2523
Results 1 - 10 of 2523. Search took: 0.03 seconds
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[en] Distributed generation units are desirable from an environmental point of view but also have an impact on the costs of electricity grids at the distribution and transmission level. Therefore, investment planning has to consider all benefits and costs of DG to build DG sources at sites where they are economically efficient. Unfortunately, this is not an easy task in an unbundled industry where distribution and generation of electricity are not planned by one single institution. For this reason, this article analyses possible policy options for giving incentives to distributed generation and focuses on the long-term investment signals related to DG.
[en] This paper proposes new regulation for nuclear power reactors aimed at increasing their safety. We begin by describing how limited liability leads to risk-loving behaviour in nuclear power companies and unsafe nuclear power reactors. By reviewing current regulatory regimes, we show that this issue is not being sufficiently addressed today. Therefore, we evaluate five regulatory instruments: (1) safety regulation, (2) minimum equity requirements, (3) mandatory insurance, (4) risk-sharing pools, and (5) catastrophe bonds. We conclude that any of these instruments either cannot be recommended in its pure form or is infeasible in reality. We therefore propose a new approach that, in its core, consists of a two-stage procedure. In the first stage, capital markets assess the risk stemming from each nuclear reactor via catastrophe bonds. In the second step, the regulator uses this private risk assessment and intervenes by charging an actuarially fair premium in the form of a Pigouvian risk tax. Society ultimately acts as an explicit insurer for nuclear risk and is, on average, fairly compensated for the risk it is taking over. - Highlights: ► Limited liability leads to excessive risk-taking in nuclear power companies. ► Current regulation does not address this issue sufficiently. ► We evaluate five regulatory instruments and explain their shortcomings. ► We propose a market-based nuclear risk tax as a new regulatory instrument.
[en] New solar Photovoltaic (PV) installations have grown globally at a rapid pace in recent years. We provide a comprehensive assessment of the cost competitiveness of this electric power source. Based on data available for the second half of 2011, we conclude that utility-scale PV installations are not yet cost competitive with fossil fuel power plants. In contrast, commercial-scale installations have already attained cost parity in the sense that the generating cost of power from solar PV is comparable to the retail electricity prices that commercial users pay, at least in certain parts of the U.S. This conclusion is shown to depend crucially on both the current federal tax subsidies for solar power and an ideal geographic location for the solar installation. Projecting recent industry trends into the future, we estimate that utility-scale solar PV facilities are on track to become cost competitive by the end of this decade. Furthermore, commercial-scale installations could reach “grid parity” in about ten years, if the current federal tax incentives for solar power were to expire at that point. - Highlights: ► Assessment of the cost competitiveness of new solar Photovoltaic (PV) installations. ► Utility-scale PV installations are not yet cost competitive with fossil fuel power plants. ► Commercial-scale installations have already attained cost parity in certain parts of the U.S. ► Utility-scale solar PV facilities are on track to become cost competitive by the end of this decade
[en] The concept of microgrid (μGrid) has been emerging as a way to integrate microgeneration (μG) in low-voltage (LV) networks and simultaneously improve its potential benefits. Technical requirements to connect μgrids to LV networks have been studied in order to make this concept technologically feasible and safe to operate. However, the regulatory framework for economic integration of μG and μGrids on distribution systems, despite being crucial, is still an open issue. The main purpose of this paper is to contribute for the development of an appropriate economic regulation framework that removes the barriers to μG and μGrid development. To do so, the relevant costs and benefits resulting from the establishment of μG and μGrid are identified and a methodology for sharing those costs and benefits among the involved economic agents is presented. The only pre-requisite of such a methodology is the existence of a net benefit to all economic agents
[en] This paper investigates the valuation of a replacement project of nuclear power plants under the deregulated electricity market. The replacement project consists of two components: the decision to decommission an existing plant and the decision to construct a new plant. In the replacement project, the decommissioning decision should be made considering not only the profitability of the existing plant but also the profitability and costs of the construction of the new plant. Real options theory is used to determine the optimal timing of the decommissioning and construction. In order to examine the effect of decommissioning time and decision making one, we consider a time-lag for these decision making times. We show the dependence of the replacement project value on uncertainty and time-lag.
[en] This study explored the key factors underlying people's anti-nuclear behavioral intentions. The protective action decision model and the heuristic–systematic model were integrated and adapted from a risk information perspective to construct a hypothetical model. A questionnaire study was conducted on a sample of residents near the Haiyang Nuclear Power Plant, which is under construction in Shandong Province, China (N=487). Results show that, as expected, perceived knowledge is vital in predicting people's information insufficiency, information seeking, systematic processing, and risk perception. Moreover, the inverted U relationship between perceived knowledge and anti-nuclear behavioral intentions is indicated in the study. Information insufficiency and information seeking also significantly predict systematic processing. Furthermore, people's behavioral intentions are motivated by risk perception but fail to be stimulated by systematic processing. Implications and recommendations for future research are discussed. - Highlights: • The study explores anti-nuclear behavior from a risk information perspective. • Risk perception and knowledge matter to anti-nuclear behavioral intentions. • Inverted U relationship between knowledge and behavioral intentions is indicated. • More understanding of nuclear power could reduce public opposition.
[en] In this paper, for a real electricity distribution network, an assessment of business opportunities to invest in distributed generation (DG) is performed through a simulation based on a full representation of three medium voltage (12 kV) feeders. The three feeders representation includes 1062 sections of conductors with 13 different sizes. The economic assessment focuses on both, the incentives of the incumbent distribution company and those of a new entrant. The technical and economic impact on losses, reliability and voltage regulation in the network area are verified. The DG solution analyzed determines a business opportunity for new investors where end users are also benefited. This work calls in the debate on the need to reformulate the current regulation model on electricity distribution, by defining clear rules to incorporate DG to the existing network, and to enable any agent to develop the proposed business. DG success depends on the location of adequate sites to strategically establish few DG units being a substitute to network expansion
[en] In 1987, the UK Conservative Party was re-elected promising to transform the electricity industry into a privatised competitive industry and to promote an expansion of nuclear power. Fulfilling both objectives was not possible. The nuclear plants were withdrawn from the sale and plans to build new plants were abandoned, but privatisation proceeded. In 2007, the Labour government began a new attempt to build nuclear plants to operate in the competitive electricity market, promising that no subsidies would be offered to them. By 2010, the utilities that were planning to build nuclear plants were beginning to suggest that 'support' in some form would be needed if they were to build new plants. More surprisingly, the energy regulator, Ofgem, cast doubt on whether a competitive wholesale electricity market would provide security of supply. In 1990, the UK government opted for a competitive electricity market over expanding nuclear power. Now, the option of opting for a competitive electricity market may not exist. However, this might not leave the way open for new nuclear plants. The expected cost of power from new nuclear plants is now so high that no more than one or two heavily subsidised plants will be built.
[en] This study presents a model-based approach for analyzing the possible effects of global change on Europe's hydropower potential at a country scale. By comparing current conditions of climate and water use with future scenarios, an overview is provided of today's potential for hydroelectricity generation and its mid- and long-term prospects. The application of the global water model WaterGAP for discharge calculations allows for an integrated assessment, taking both climate and socioeconomic changes into account. This study comprises two key parts: First, the 'gross' hydropower potential is analyzed, in order to outline the general distribution and trends in hydropower capabilities across Europe. Then, the assessment focuses on the 'developed' hydropower potential of existing hydropower plants, in order to allow for a more realistic picture of present and future electricity production. For the second part, a new data set has been developed which geo-references 5991 European hydropower stations and distinguishes them into run-of-river and reservoir stations. The results of this study present strong indications that, following moderate climate and global change scenario assumptions, severe future alterations in discharge regimes have to be expected, leading to unstable regional trends in hydropower potentials with reductions of 25% and more for southern and southeastern European countries. (author)
[en] The recent revival of global interest in the next generation of nuclear power reactors is causing a re-examination of the role of nuclear power in the United States. This renewed interest has led to questions regarding the capability and capacity of current US industries to support a renewal of nuclear power plant deployment. Key among the many questions currently being asked is what potential exists for the creation of new jobs as a result of developing and operating these new plants? Idaho National Laboratory and Bechtel Power Corporation collaborated to perform a Department of Energy-sponsored study that evaluated the potential for job creation in the United States should these new next generation nuclear power plants be built. The study focused primarily on providing an initial estimate of the numbers of new manufacturing jobs that could be created, including those that could be repatriated from overseas, resulting from the construction of these new reactors. In addition to the growth in the manufacturing sector, the study attempted to estimate the potential increase in construction trades necessary to accomplish the new construction.