Great news out of St. Paul! Minnesota’s electric grid can handle 40% renewables while reliably supplying power 24/7.
The study came out November 5, 2014 and is entitled the “Minnesota Renewable Energy Integration and Transmission Study.” It was the end result of legislation passed in 2013 (supported by the Sierra Club) which required the Department of Commerce to determine if Minnesota’s grid could integrate 40% renewable energy on the electric grid while meeting the state’s energy demands.
The study was conducted by engineers working with Minnesota’s utilities and transmission companies in cooperation with MISO, the regional electric network operators.
The study also looked at the grid’s capacity to provide 50% of Minnesota’s power from renewables. The authors said further analysis would be needed to ensure system reliability at that level, but thought it feasible with significant transmission upgrades if neighboring states sharing the North Central electric grid also increased from an average 15% to 25% renewable energy production.
Tell your representative and senator the good news, as we will be asking for an increase in the renewable standard to 40% by 2030 during this year’s legislative session.
You can read the report here: http://www.minnelectrans.com/documents/MRITS-report.pdf