An abstract for a new study from the California Energy Commission (CEC), done in partnership with Southern California Edison (SCE) to review the impacts of DERs on the electric system, is below. To read the study in full visit CEC’s website.
This is the second study done in partnership with Southern California Edison evaluating the impacts of distributed energy resources on the utility electricity system. The first study evaluated impacts at the system level. This study evaluated impacts at a regional level. An upcoming study will evaluate impacts at a feeder level.
This Phase II study leverages the analytical framework demonstrated in Phase I to further explore the impacts, benefits, and costs of distributed energy resources in the San Joaquin Valley region of Southern California Edison’s system. The study assessed the ability of distributed energy resources (DER, that is, distributed generation, energy efficiency, demand response, energy storage, and electric vehicles) to meet forecasted load growth and reliability needs, as well as the potential interconnection and integration costs to the transmission and distribution systems in the region.
The study found that optimized location and timing of distributed energy resources could lead to net benefits greater than $300 million, caused primarily by the deferral of transmission system investments. The key driver for the potential transmission system deferral was the assumption of whether California’s persistent drought would necessitate certain transmission investments that DER could avoid or defer. Furthermore, the study found that energy storage and advanced inverters can reduce interconnection costs associated with some types of DER, improving the overall value to the distribution system.