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Post-capitalism battery arrays

I'm not usually very fond of the term, but it's hard to describe this quote as anything other than post-capitalism at its finest:

"While battery arrays that are installed to support short-duration renewables integration may be able to underbid current service providers and win a share of the frequency regulation revenue, additional battery capacity that exceeds total demand is likely to drive frequency regulation prices down to levels that are currently unthinkable. It may ultimately be good for electricity consumers, but it will be very bad for facility owners."

To be fair, the underlying concern here is that a combination of low prices and high expenses would lead to financial losses, which are generally bad for organizations trying to avoid bankruptcy. It is certainly true that increasing reliance on renewables poses a variety of severe financial challenges. However, this is a problem with a number of fairly obvious solutions, such as subsidies or direct state procurement of energy storage resources, such as would be permitted under AB 56.

That being said, even with AB56, the author is correct that California is not currently in a position to transition to 100% renewables plus storage any time in the foreseeable future. This is something that's already been determined by the state regulators. In order to continue reducing emissions while keeping the grid stable, I expect we're going to have to start making major investments in carbon capture and storage for natural gas plants. This will probably require either substantial subsidies or a hefty tax on carbon.

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