This group brings together the best thinkers on energy and climate. Join us for smart, insightful posts and conversations about where the energy industry is and where it is going.


Evolution of the North-American Electricity Systems – Potential Policy Priorities

image credit: © Adonis1969 |
Afshin Matin's picture
Head, System Integration Unit Environment and Climate Change Canada

I am a power engineer with around 30 years work experience in private and public organizations. Early career was in power system planning focused on transmission planning, transmission equipment...

  • Member since 2020
  • 13 items added with 6,140 views
  • Feb 19, 2021

This item is part of the State of the Industry 2021 SPECIAL ISSUE, click here for more

My 2021 predictions regarding where governments, in their policy work, will focus their efforts on a low carbon electricity market. These will encompass supporting of the development of non-emitting or low emitting technologies that will largely influence reductions of GHGs. Important among these technologies are: 

  • Fourth generation nuclear technologies (small modular reactors); these nuclear units will be required to provide baseload power, in place of the retiring coal units, as well as backup power to variable wind and solar energy generation. Several competing technologies are being developed with few having deployment potential around 2030. 
  • More economic carbon capture and storage technologies, to remove post-combustion CO2 from fossil sources. These to be installed primarily on gas turbines used for baseload and intermittent power in support of variable renewables. 
  • Conversion of coal units to gas-fired units. 
  • Expansion of distributed energy resources in the form of demand response, battery storage, and combine heat and power. 
  • Deployment of short duration (Li-Ion) battery storage systems in support of variable generation.
  • Research, development and deployment of cost-effective long duration storage devices, notably liquid air energy storage, pumped hydro and hydrogen. 
  • Expansion of wind and solar generation with use of smart inverters and integrated with smart grids. 
  • First stage of load electrification (expanded electric vehicles at 30% penetration rate, electric space and water heating, heat pumps). 
  • Expanded transmission systems both intra-state (intra-province) and inter-state (inter-provincial) to move clean renewable power to displace thermal generation and provide ancillary services such as storage.

No discussions yet. Start a discussion below.

Afshin Matin's picture
Thank Afshin for the Post!
Energy Central contributors share their experience and insights for the benefit of other Members (like you). Please show them your appreciation by leaving a comment, 'liking' this post, or following this Member.
More posts from this member

Get Published - Build a Following

The Energy Central Power Industry Network is based on one core idea - power industry professionals helping each other and advancing the industry by sharing and learning from each other.

If you have an experience or insight to share or have learned something from a conference or seminar, your peers and colleagues on Energy Central want to hear about it. It's also easy to share a link to an article you've liked or an industry resource that you think would be helpful.

                 Learn more about posting on Energy Central »