Solutions to over-generation of solar energy

Adrienne SorensenAugust 1, 201810540

Solutions to over-generation of solar energy

California the sunshine state has created a good solar energy problem. Solar generation has dramatically reduced the electricity demand supplied by gas power plants in the state. However, solar generation ramp down as the evening electricity peak is ramping up. This results in the afternoon-to-evening ramp places heavy stress on traditional power plants that’s depended on to pick up solar’s slack after the sun sets. Solar plus batteries can assist with the short-term power load while sustaining dependable electricity supply. Solar power can sustain energy needs for a long period of time. When the sun goes down, solar batteries in a residential land an industrial level reduce this jump in demand for traditional power as the sun goes down. As increased solar penetration levels reduce system net demand on the front-end of the evening peak, the overall system peak in net demand becomes “sharper”. That is, the highest levels of utility electricity demand become shorter and less dramatic when solar and storage are incorporated together. The combination of residential solar with large-scale solar in California is causing wholesale midday power to become so inexpensive. This results in keeping traditional power plants online can cost more than it is worth. 

Grid transforms and market expectations evolve

Solar plans with battery storage could change this things. The increased electricity demand from batteries can be a stabilizing force for the electricity demand and  market prices. As the grid transforms and market expectations evolve, we are likely to see dramatic shifts in what becomes normal for wholesale electricity market prices. 

Storage is good for solar power

Stabilization of the hourly shape of electricity demand could mean reduced energy prices, evolving net-metering contracts, and less market volatility. Storage is good for solar power, and solar power is good for storage. Utilities could find it more economically optimal to purchase power on the spot market than to fire up aging generators, forcing these units into early retirement. Whatever these fundamental shifts in electricity supply will bring, businesses with a stake in the game will change their business to handle their customer’s needs. Power plants will evolve too. If it makes more sense to have a large scale solar plant with an additional capacity to store power for later, then those companies will close their gas-fired power plants and built more solar plants. As more people switch to residential solar power with attached storage, the electronic grid will look totally different than it does today.

If you want to move into the future and join the solar revolution, or if you want to find out what solar panels are right for you, go to and try our price checker tool. You can see how much a system will cost, and how much you can save over the next 20 years. For more information relating to going solar, don't forget to visit our solar blog section for more handy guides and articles.

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