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The Diablo Canyon nuclear plant retirement plan - myths versus reality


The Diablo Canyon nuclear plant retirement plan - myths versus reality

Report summary

On June 21,  Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) and a group of labor and environmental organizations issued a press release announcing the planned retirement of PG&E’s Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant in 2025 at the end of its current 40-year license.  Many parties to the plan and industry news articles suggest that PG&E will completely replace Diablo Canyon's energy with renewable energy and energy efficiency by 2031.  The reality is that PG&E is giving itself a full 20 years after the plant retires to fully replace its carbon-free energy.  In addition, some assumptions by pro-closure advocates about the relative costs and benefits of replacing Diablo Canyon with renewable energy appear to be overly optimistic, with fundamental mistakes about how the power system operates and simplistic comparisons of generator costs.  This Insight investigates the retirement plan and disproves several of these claims.

What's included?

This report includes 1 file(s)

  • The Diablo Canyon nuclear plant retirement plan - myths versus reality PDF - 381.93 KB 10 Pages, 0 Tables, 3 Figures

Description

This Power Markets Insight report highlights the key issues surrounding this topic, and draws out the implications for those involved.

For participants, suppliers and advisors who want to look at the trends, risks and issues within the power industry, this report gives you an expert opinion and analysis to help inform your decision making.

Wood Mackenzie's detailed analysis and reliable market forecasts provide a strong reference, enabling a quick and concise description about the relationship between this event and its implications.

Underpinned by our extensive gas, coal and oil markets research, Wood Mackenzie's detailed analysis and reliable market forecasts provide a reliable foundation for investments and corporate planning. We help you understand key regulatory and economic drivers, and emerging industry tends in the power industry.

  • Key Takeaways
  • Background and Introduction
  • Myth #1: Diablo Canyon’s carbon-free energy will be fully replaced by 2031 without any increase in carbon emissions
  • Myth #2: Replacing Diablo Canyon with renewables will lower CAISO operating reserve requirements
  • Myth #3: Retiring Diablo Canyon will make it easier to integrate renewable energy
  • Myth #4: Levelized costs can be used to compare different generator technologies
  • Conclusions

In this report there are 3 tables or charts, including:

  • Key Takeaways
  • Background and Introduction
  • Myth #1: Diablo Canyon’s carbon-free energy will be fully replaced by 2031 without any increase in carbon emissions
    • PG&E’s annual carbon-free energy supply mix from RPS Renewables and Diablo Canyon
  • Myth #2: Replacing Diablo Canyon with renewables will lower CAISO operating reserve requirements
  • Myth #3: Retiring Diablo Canyon will make it easier to integrate renewable energy
    • CAISO Hourly Generation and ZP26 Real-time LMP on 4/23/2016
    • Replaying CAISO 4/23/2016 dispatch without DCPP but double the solar and triple the wind generation
  • Myth #4: Levelized costs can be used to compare different generator technologies
  • Conclusions
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