The price of electricity along the West Coast is likely to spike over the next few decades because of more extreme weather events, new research suggests.
The price of electricity along the West Coast is likely to spike over the next few decades because of more extreme weather events, new research suggests. More severe heat waves and droughts are also likely to impact the reliability of the coast’s power grid.
In studies published last month in the journal Earth’s Future, researchers estimated future supply and demand of power on the West Coast under two separate scenarios: one where excessive heat stemming from climate change strains the supply of power, and one where the grid moves toward renewable energy sources like wind and solar, while the climate follows historic trends.
In the first study, computer models simulated the impacts of climate change on the power grid in California and the Pacific Northwest, evaluating the grid’s reliability and price under 11 different climate scenarios between 2030 and 2060.
Researchers found an increased risk of power blackouts in the summer and early fall, largely driven by extreme heat in California, which creates high demand for power as people cool their homes.
Read more at North Carolina State University
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