The US now has an actual plan to connect clean energy to the grid


The US Department of Energy has just released its first-ever roadmap to speed up the connection of more clean energy to the grid.

The goal is to finally clear the huge backlog of solar, wind, and battery projects waiting to be built. According to a report recently released by DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, nearly 2,600 gigawatts of clean energy generation and battery storage capacity are actively seeking grid interconnection.

The Transmission Interconnection Roadmap, developed by DOE’s Interconnection Innovation e-Xchange (i2X), is for all stakeholders, from transmission providers to interconnection customers to state agencies and more.

The roadmap also sets aggressive targets for interconnection improvement by 2030 and outlines tools to quickly and efficiently connect more clean energy projects to the grid.

Ultimately, the roadmap is designed to ensure the Biden administration’s goal of 100% clean electricity by 2035 is achieved.

US Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm said:

Clearing the backlog of nearly 12,000 solar, wind, and storage projects waiting to connect to the grid is essential to deploying clean electricity to more Americans. 

Through the i2X program, the Biden-Harris Administration is accelerating the interconnection process by ensuring all stakeholders have better access to data and improved standards and procedures as we seek to develop and maintain a more efficient, reliable and clean grid.

The Transmission Interconnection Roadmap contains four goals:

  • Increase data access, transparency, and security for interconnection. This offers solutions to improve the scope, accessibility, quality, and standardization of data on projects already in interconnection queues. It also aims to enhance the scope, timeliness, accuracy, and consistency of interconnection study models and modeling assumptions that transmission providers make available to interconnection customers.
  • Improve interconnection process and timeline. This contains solutions to improve queue management practices, affected system studies, inclusive and fair processes, and workforce development.
  • Promote economic efficiency in interconnection. This offers solutions to improve cost allocation, reduce costs to electricity consumers, enhance the coordination between transmission planning and the interconnection process, and optimize the rightsizing of transmission investment through improvements in interconnection studies.
  • Maintain a reliable, resilient, and secure grid. Includes updating technical requirements within interconnection studies, models, and tools while also improving industry interconnection standards.

You can read more details about the four goals and details of the implementation plans here.

Read more: Without a grid upgrade, US electrification can’t go forward. This company is helping to fix it

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