Benchmarking the U.S. Electricity Grid Against the Eclipse

May 19, 2017 | Media

Author: Trevor Drake


On August 21st, the United States will experience a solar eclipse. The eclipse will be visible across the continent … While Californians are outside staring at the sky, California’s electric utilities will be briefly — and hectically — trying to make up for the loss of output from those solar power plants …

… Elsewhere, three Midwest states—Illinois, Ohio, and Minnesota—are plodding their way through the various stages of shaping a future in which utilities operate within a reliable, resilient, affordable, and 21st century clean grid system. In Minnesota, this e21 Initiative is the result of cooperation between the Great Plains Institute and the Center for Energy and Environment, aided by project partners George Washington University Law School, Xcel Energy, and Minnesota Power …

… 2017 eclipse is a way to test that system. In effect, the industry will be benchmarking itself against a neutral player — the sun …”

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