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Cost-optimal electricity systems with increasing renewable energy penetration for islands across the globe


  • Gioutsos, Dean Marcus
  • Blok, Kornelis
  • van Velzen, Leonore
  • Moorman, Sjoerd


Cost-optimal electricity system configurations with increasing renewable energy penetration were determined in this article for six islands of different geographies, sizes and contexts, utilizing photovoltaic energy, wind energy, pumped hydro storage and battery storage. The results of the optimizations showed strong reasoning for islands to invest in renewable energy technologies (particularly wind energy), as compared to conventional power generation. Levelized cost of systems for electricity generation decrease considerably with increasing renewable energy penetrations, to an optimal point in the range of 40–80% penetration. Furthermore, renewable electricity integration in the order of 60–90% could still be achieved with no added cost from the initial situation. Cost increases after these optimal points are attributed to the growing inclusion of storage, required to meet the higher renewable energy shares. However, with battery costs forecast to fall in the coming years, and a cost reduction of 50–70% already causing lithium-ion batteries to overtake pumped hydro as a cost-favorable storage option in this model, there is a real case for islands to begin their transition in a staged process; first installing wind and PV generation, and then - as storage costs decrease and their renewable energy capacities increase - investing in storage options.

Suggested Citation

  • Gioutsos, Dean Marcus & Blok, Kornelis & van Velzen, Leonore & Moorman, Sjoerd, 2018. "Cost-optimal electricity systems with increasing renewable energy penetration for islands across the globe," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 226(C), pages 437-449.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:appene:v:226:y:2018:i:c:p:437-449
    DOI: 10.1016/j.apenergy.2018.05.108

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Tabar, Vahid Sohrabi & Abbasi, Vahid, 2019. "Energy management in microgrid with considering high penetration of renewable resources and surplus power generation problem," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 189(C).
    2. Meschede, Henning & Esparcia, Eugene A. & Holzapfel, Peter & Bertheau, Paul & Ang, Rosario C. & Blanco, Ariel C. & Ocon, Joey D., 2019. "On the transferability of smart energy systems on off-grid islands using cluster analysis – A case study for the Philippine archipelago," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 251(C), pages 1-1.
    3. Fan, Jing-Li & Wang, Jia-Xing & Hu, Jia-Wei & Wang, Yu & Zhang, Xian, 2019. "Optimization of China’s provincial renewable energy installation plan for the 13th five-year plan based on renewable portfolio standards," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 254(C).
    4. Daniele Fiaschi & Giampaolo Manfrida & Karolina Petela & Lorenzo Talluri, 2019. "Thermo-Electric Energy Storage with Solar Heat Integration: Exergy and Exergo-Economic Analysis," Energies, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 12(4), pages 1-21, February.
    5. Bertheau, Paul & Cader, Catherina, 2019. "Electricity sector planning for the Philippine islands: Considering centralized and decentralized supply options," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 251(C), pages 1-1.
    6. Maryori C. Díaz-Ramírez & Víctor J. Ferreira & Tatiana García-Armingol & Ana María López-Sabirón & Germán Ferreira, 2020. "Environmental Assessment of Electrochemical Energy Storage Device Manufacturing to Identify Drivers for Attaining Goals of Sustainable Materials 4.0," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 12(1), pages 1-20, January.
    7. Mazzoni, Stefano & Ooi, Sean & Nastasi, Benedetto & Romagnoli, Alessandro, 2019. "Energy storage technologies as techno-economic parameters for master-planning and optimal dispatch in smart multi energy systems," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 254(C).
    8. Javed, Muhammad Shahzad & Zhong, Dan & Ma, Tao & Song, Aotian & Ahmed, Salman, 2020. "Hybrid pumped hydro and battery storage for renewable energy based power supply system," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 257(C).
    9. Mendoza-Vizcaino, Javier & Raza, Muhammad & Sumper, Andreas & Díaz-González, Francisco & Galceran-Arellano, Samuel, 2019. "Integral approach to energy planning and electric grid assessment in a renewable energy technology integration for a 50/50 target applied to a small island," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 233, pages 524-543.
    10. Linda Barelli & Gianni Bidini & Paolo Cherubini & Andrea Micangeli & Dario Pelosi & Carlo Tacconelli, 2019. "How Hybridization of Energy Storage Technologies Can Provide Additional Flexibility and Competitiveness to Microgrids in the Context of Developing Countries," Energies, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 12(16), pages 1-22, August.
    11. Khawaja, Yara & Allahham, Adib & Giaouris, Damian & Patsios, Charalampos & Walker, Sara & Qiqieh, Issa, 2019. "An integrated framework for sizing and energy management of hybrid energy systems using finite automata," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 250(C), pages 257-272.
    12. Li, He & Liu, Pan & Guo, Shenglian & Ming, Bo & Cheng, Lei & Yang, Zhikai, 2019. "Long-term complementary operation of a large-scale hydro-photovoltaic hybrid power plant using explicit stochastic optimization," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 238(C), pages 863-875.


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