Flexibility: Integrating more renewables in the grid
Flexibility is a growing challenge for energy systems due to a rising share of renewables on the one hand, and electrification of demand on the other. What innovations provide flexibility? How do we secure a stable energy system in the future?
As energy systems transition to more sustainable sources and demand for electricity increases, new challenges arise in ensuring that the lights stay on. This podcast explores the concept of energy flexibility; what is it and why do we need it now more than ever?
Conventional power generation by fossil fuels provides both stability and flexibility. Supply is scheduled to match demand and gas-fired power plants can respond relatively quickly to fluctuations. Supply and demand must constantly be balanced to ensure that power failures do not occur. However, as we switch to more solar and wind power and phase out conventional power stations for good, we lose the ability to do this. Wind cannot be controlled and solar cannot be turned on at night. At the same time, our demand for energy is shifting to electricity, for instance by electric vehicles and electrification of heat. Demand for electricity grows and we can expect larger peak demands. This is (in short) the reason why flexibility is a growing challenge for energy systems.
But how do we meet this need? Some companies like GIGA Storage provide flexibility with battery storage. Meanwhile larger grid operators, such as TenneT, are looking towards better centralised demand response systems. During this podcast Lonneke Tabak, Strategy and Consulting Manager energy transition, will be joined by Ruud Nijs, Founding Partner and Chief Executive Officer for GIGA Storage, and Jan-Paul Dijckmans, Associate Director of Strategy & Partnerships at TenneT. Together they discuss the flexible future of energy systems and weigh-up the innovative solutions emerging to fill this need.