Daily Rules, Proposed Rules, and Notices of the Federal Government
Hydropower provides a substantial portion of the existing power grid's flexibility and does so without emitting greenhouse emissions. However, the demands on the hydropower fleet's flexibility are growing due to increasing installation of renewables like wind and solar that produce variable power. Simultaneously, the capability to provide this flexibility is diminishing as the hydropower fleet loses efficiency as it ages, and competing water uses such as irrigation and domestic supply take priority over generation capabilities. New advanced pumped storage technologies could add the needed flexibility to integrate variable renewables, but U.S. development of pumped storage has been stalled for the last two decades.
Exchanging information concerning individual experience by industry experts through the DOE sponsored 2010 Pumped Storage Summit was informational and helped DOE to identify a set of key issues preventing the deployment of advanced pumped storage hydropower technologies. DOE was able to utilize the key information obtained at that meeting to carefully target research and development funding towards high-impact projects, such as benefits demonstration and pre-construction support.
DOE is planning a workshop for the exchange of information on hydropower's ability to integrate variable renewables into our nation's grid. Participants at the September workshop should limit information and comments to those based on personal experience, individual advice, information, or facts regarding this topic. It is not the object of this session to obtain any group position or consensus. Rather, this meeting is an opportunity for participants to gain an individual understanding of the cited knowledge, research, and technology needs. To most effectively use the limited time, please refrain from passing judgment on another participant's recommendations or advice, and instead, concentrate on your individual experiences.