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Planning for the renewable future – new report from the International Renewable Energy Agency


The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) has just launched ‘Planning for the renewable future: Long-term modelling and tools to expand variable renewable power in emerging economies‘, which was presented at the 2017 World Future Energy Summit in Abu Dhabi. 

The report guides energy planners and modelling practitioners through various modelling practices and use of renewable data to better represent variable renewable energy (VRE) sources in long-term generation expansion planning. The report highlights the findings from AVRIL (Addressing Variable Renewable Energy in Long-term Energy Planning), an IRENA project that has identified the best practices in long-term planning and modelling to represent high shares of VRE.

The report includes two main parts:

  • Part One (Planning the transition to variable renewables) offers guidance to energy decision makers and planners by providing an overview of key long-term issues and concerns around the large-scale integration of VRE into the power grid.
  • Part Two (Long-term models for energy transition planning) offers guidance to technical practitioners in the field of energy modelling, specifically with a catalogue of practical VRE modelling methodologies for long-term scenario planning. Topics addressed include: temporal and spatial resolution of generation expansion models, calibration of time-slices, capacity credit constraints, flexibility constraints, flexibility balance validation, coupling with production cost models, linking grid expansion needs with VRE expansion, site specific representation of generation, and transmission needs.

Download the report here

Read a longer summary of the paper here. In case of questions or suggestions, please contact Dr. Asami Miketa, Programme Officer at the IRENA Innovation and Technology Centre.

Photo: Centre for Alternative Technology/Flickr