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Optimising the European transmission system for 77% renewable electricity by 2030

Optimising the European transmission system for 77% renewable electricity by 2030

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To spur Europe to meet ambitious CO2 emission reduction targets, Greenpeace has developed scenarios for each country to increase its electricity generation from renewable sources. Energynautics was commissioned by Greenpeace to model and optimise the grid extensions in Europe necessary to integrate these large shares of renewables (77% of the total electricity supply by 2030, including 53% from wind and solar). The results and further analysis of the data are presented here. It was found that by preferring high voltage direct current rather than alternating current network extensions, the overall grid upgrades in Europe (measured as the length of new transmission lines) can be reduced by a third. By allowing a small amount of curtailment of variable renewable sources, a disproportionately large number of the necessary grid extensions can be avoided. In addition, the accuracy of decoupling active from reactive power flows is analysed.

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