The article was written by Vitaliy Daviy, CEO IB Centre, Co-Founder of CISOLAR, SEF, IB Club and Solar Academy
A lot of markable for the renewable energy events have happened for the last week, which I want to comment on.
The sharp atypical cooling that "covered" most of Europe, Asia, and North America last week has led to a collapse of the energy system in some regions. Among the most affected is the US state of Texas, where the energy infrastructure has fallen: half of the state's generating capacity - 30 GW - has stopped, and wholesale electricity prices have soared by 10,000%. As a result, most Texans were left without electricity, water, and heat for several days.
Renewable energy haters have been quick to blame the green generation for this large-scale energy disaster, which they believe were not ready for such a temperature challenge.
However, I want to note that 56% of Texas generation are gas-fired power plants, 19% are thermal coal-fired power plants, 9% are nuclear power plants and only about 15% are renewables, which, by the way, are 90% in operation. Only some wind farms had to stop temporarily to solve the issue of icing the blades. Now everything works.
And the problem arose because of a feature of the Texas energy system: it is not connected to the overall US energy system. This was once achieved by oil lobbyists to help Texas avoid federal energy regulation. So when the wells froze and Texas's coal supply was disrupted, there was simply nowhere to connect the extra capacity.
This situation has not cast a shadow over renewable energy, but on the contrary - has become a powerful driver for the development of solar energy. The only ones not affected by the energy crisis in the state are 700,000 households that have installed solar power plants, so within a week after the collapse, demand for home power plant installations has jumped by 68% in Texas and will at least double by the end of the year.
This case has become a clear example of the fact that renewable energy, in particular solar energy, will become the basis of energy stability in the face of abrupt climate change, and a valuable experience for other countries.
Investing in solar energy is building a reliable energy base both in terms of public policy and individual consumers.
The work program of the 10th Conference and Exhibition of Solar Energy in Central and Eastern Europe, which will take place in Kyiv on May 25-27, 2021, is dedicated to new challenges and prospects for the development of solar energy in the new economic and climatic conditions.