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Intermittency and CO2 Reductions from Wind Energy

Using detailed 5-minute electricity generation data, we examine the impact of wind intermittency on carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions savings from wind energy in the Southwest Power Pool from 2012–2014. Parametric and semi-parametric analysis confirms concerns that intra-hour wind intermittency reduces CO2 emissions savings from wind—in the top decile of wind intermittency, emission savings are reduced by nearly 10 percent. However, the average wind intermittency effect on emission savings is modest, on the order of 6.5 percent when accounting for dynamic effects. Evidence suggests the intermittency effect is likely to remain modest in the near-term.

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Keywords: Wind power, Intermittency, Carbon emissions

DOI: 10.5547/01956574.41.5.dkaf

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Published in Volume 41, Number 5 of the bi-monthly journal of the IAEE's Energy Economics Education Foundation.


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