Welcome. I am the author of Universal Time, a sci-fi urban comedy;
Beaufort 1849, an historical novel set in antebellum South Carolina;
and Pearl City Control Theory, a comedy of manners set in present-day San Francisco.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Monster Day for Renewables in California

Yesterday, May 14th, was a windy, sunny, fairly cool day in California. As a result, records were set for the proportion of California electricity produced by renewables. For the day: 34%!  From 3 - 4 pm: 54%! And the grid didn't explode, black out, or do any number of other terrible things. Congratulations to the California ISO, the entity that manages and balances California's electric grid, for coping with its highest proportion of renewable electricity so far. Here are the graphics from the ISO for yesterday.

This is great news, and you will no doubt hear more about it in the media. Of course, remember, journalists often conflate electricity with energy. Until we go all electric, electricity is a small subset of energy used. For example, Californians consume the energy equivalent of 161 kwhs per person per day, but only 18 kwhs of that comes from electricity. However, roughly 30 kwhs per person each day is wasted creating that electricity (waste heat from burning fossil fuels), so as California increases its renewables, its total per person energy consumption will decrease. Next up--hot water and space heating via heat pumps and solar!